WOMEN IN OUTLAW MOTORCYCLE GANGS
AbstractThis article is based on participant observation and interviews with outlaw bikers and their female associates over the course of 17 years. It describes the place of women in motorcycle gangs and the motivations and backgrounds of women affiliated with outlaw biker clubs. Biker women are compared to street gang girls in terms of their gang participation and relationships with male gang members. Over the course of the study, the role of women in motorcycle gangs changed. Although earlier biker women were simply partners in parties and hedonistic sexuality, in modern outlaw gangs, women are expected to be engaged in economic pursuits for their individual men and sometimes for the entire club. The changing role of biker women appears to be influenced by the gangs' increased involvement in crime and other money-making activities.