Source: (1989) International Journal of the Sociology of Law 17(3): 287-306.

Abolitionism as defined in the article focuses on three interpretations of criminology: that the underlying social problem is more significant than the specific label given to a crime; that criminal law is an insufficient vehicle to solve social problems; and that the victim is an important element in the definition of a crime. The feminist perspective of law and justice contrasts sharply with patriarchal law by emphasizing the personal and the emotional as the starting point of its politics. Feminism and abolitionism share the anti-positive view that science is not value-free and should be used to influence society. By joining forces in a practical way, feminist and abolitionist views can emancipate criminal justice and make it more responsive.