Gangs

Overview

Presents contrasting viewpoints on the following questions: "How serious a problem are gangs in the United States?" "What factors encourage gang behavior?" and "How can gangs be eliminated?"

Background information on the history of gangs in America precedes first-person accounts by four gang members from different backgrounds and with differing ideas about the role of gangs in their lives.

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Overview

Presents contrasting viewpoints on the following questions: "How serious a problem are gangs in the United States?" "What factors encourage gang behavior?" and "How can gangs be eliminated?"

Background information on the history of gangs in America precedes first-person accounts by four gang members from different backgrounds and with differing ideas about the role of gangs in their lives.

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Brenda Moses-Allen
Through her interviews for The Other America series, Stewart hopes readers will see individuals and not stereotypes of specific groups of people. However, the four young people in this book, three males and one female ages sixteen to twenty, do reflect a certain amount of stereotypical behavior and life experiences. Three are from a single-parent, female-headed home in which that parent's ability to control and define limitations and expectations are worn thin. The only female gang member comes from a two-parent home, but her father's work-related absences from home have reduced his authority over her. All of these young people reveal that they have known someone who died a violent death as a result of being in a gang. They assert that peer pressure is a strong factor in the decision to join a gang, and that belonging to a gang offers protection and pride for its members. Confirming commonly held views of gangs today, the four tell Stewart that violence is a way of life that is accepted and expected, and that selling drugs and carrying guns are normal gang activities that provide income and promote status. Some of these young people do not foresee a life without gang involvement. As adults they can become respected OG (Old Gang members). But behind the bravado of the gang talk, there is a quiet sadness in each of these young people's words, as they feel they have no choice but to join a gang. Only DeWayne, who was shot, left the gang and is now warning his younger brothers about the dangers of gang life. Stewart provides a brief overview of gang history in the United States. The interview format allows the subjects to speak in their own voices, making this work very accessible to students doing research on gang life. Black-and-white photos of the gang members offer a more personal glimpse into their lives. The list of organizations providing information on gangs and the further reading section will be very useful in citizenship class discussions. Well written and recommended. Index. Further Reading. VOYA Codes: 3Q 4P M J S (Readable without serious defects, Broad general YA appeal, Middle School-defined as grades 6 to 8, Junior High-defined as grades 7 to 9 and Senior High-defined as grades 10 to 12).
School Library Journal
Gr 7 UpBrief articles offering contrasting viewpoints address three questions: "How Serious a Problem Are Gangs in the United States?" "What Factors Encourage Gang Behavior?" and "How Can Gangs Be Eliminated?" Each chapter is a summation of research culled from books, interviews, and articles. Stewart does a fine job of presenting the information in a concise, straightforward format. She maintains her objectivity throughout and succeeds in giving equal time to both sides. The information is general enough to be of use to readers with no background on the subject. Occasional black-and-white photographs, cartoons, and graphs reinforce the text. One appendix includes lists of facts and statistics about gangs; another offers extensive summaries of documents related to the subject. The book concludes with a list of study questions, suggestions for further reading, and a thorough subject index. Students will find the material thoughtfully organized, well presented, and easy to access. A book for most collections.Edward Sullivan, New York Public Library
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781565107502
  • Publisher: Cengage Gale
  • Publication date: 9/28/1997
  • Series: Opposing Viewpoints Digests Series
  • Pages: 110
  • Age range: 11 - 14 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.30 (d)

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