Thursday, December 30, 2010

Study: Ambivalence toward mothers who kill

An examination of 45 U.S. cases of maternal neonaticide:

This study includes 44 female offenders and 45 infant deaths and highlights society's ambivalence toward neonaticide offenders. The authors suggest that this ambivalence may be attributed to: (1) the perception that an offender's emotional and physical turmoil during the birth and homicide reduces her culpability; (2) the sentiment that neonaticide offenders are more "redeemable" than other offenders; and (3) the uncertainty about the personhood of a fetus or newborn.