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Criminalization of Black ChildrenRace, Gender, and Delinquency in Chicago's Juvenile Justice System, 1899-1945$
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Tera Eva Agyepong

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781469636443

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469636443.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 20 September 2021

Constructing a Black Female Delinquent

Constructing a Black Female Delinquent

Race, Gender, and the Criminalization of African American Girls at the Illinois Training School for Girls at Geneva

(p.70) Chapter Three Constructing a Black Female Delinquent
Criminalization of Black Children

Tera Eva Agyepong

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter examines the state’s flagship institution for delinquent girls. It reveals the way intersecting notions of race, gender, and sexuality shaped reformers’ and practitioners’ implementation of juvenile justice. African American girls at the Illinois Training School were blamed for the interracial sexual relationships staff members and professionals abhorred and were considered the most violent girls in the institution. They also became subject to a race specific and gendered construction of female delinquency in the institution. Unlike the image of a fixable, inherently innocent delinquent that spurred the child-saving movement, black girls were cast as inherently deviant, unfixable, and dangerous delinquent whose negative influences could contaminate other children in the institution.

Keywords:   Black children, black girls, Chicago, juvenile justice system, Illinois Training School for Girls at Geneva, industrial schools, intersectionality, sexuality, delinquency, punitive justice

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