Provocation, Law Reform and the Medea Syndrome

Criminal Law Journal, Vol. 28, No. 3, pp. 133-140, 2004

Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 09/74

13 Pages Posted: 2 Sep 2009

See all articles by Graeme Coss

Graeme Coss

The University of Sydney Law School

Date Written: September 1, 2009

Abstract

This article examines the pervasive gender bias in the criminal law's defence of provocation, critiquing some key writings and cases. The author introduces his concept of the Medea syndrome, a notion that helps to explain both ongoing blindness to male violence as well as the lie of Woman's inherent evil and deceit. Early reform proposals emanating from the Law Commission of England and Wales, and the Victorian Law Reform Commission are analysed. The article also investigates sentencing trends of defendants post the lifting of the marital-rape exemption in England, and concludes by cautioning against losing focus of male violence at sentencing in provocation cases.

Keywords: homicide, provocation, male violence, gender bias, proprietariness, reform, abolition, sentencing, England & Wales, Victoria

JEL Classification: K10, K14, K30

Suggested Citation

Coss, Graeme, Provocation, Law Reform and the Medea Syndrome (September 1, 2009). Criminal Law Journal, Vol. 28, No. 3, pp. 133-140, 2004; Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 09/74. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1465242

Graeme Coss (Contact Author)

The University of Sydney Law School ( email )

New Law Building, F10
The University of Sydney
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia

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