Write 1-2-page responses (typed, double-spaced, 12-pt font) to the questions listed below.
1) A central theme is the socialization of adolescents and young adults in disadvantaged, high crime neighborhoods.Drawing on this week’s readings (especially the articles by Elijah Anderson & David Harding) discuss the types of behaviors that are learned in this context. What explanations do the authors offer to account for how/why these behaviors become normalized?
2) Surveillance is a key concept in both the Brooks chapter (“The Narrative Production of ‘Real Police’”) and the Goffman article (“On the Run: Wanted Men in a Philadelphia Ghetto”). According to these authors, how is surveillance used as a means of policing and social control in the ghetto? What are its consequences for young Black men?
3) A key point made in all three of the readings for today is that incarceration in the U.S. both results from existing inequalities as well as contributes to / exacerbates future inequalities. Using examples from the readings, explain what is meant by this.
4) A key theme in the readings for this week is that the decision to work in the informal economy can be interpreted as a rational choice. Using specific examples from at least two of this week’s readings.
- Elijah Anderson - The code of the streets
- David J. Harding - Violence, older peers, and the socialization of Adolescent boys in disadvantanged neighborhoods
- Alice Goffman - On the run: wanted men in a Philadelphia ghetto
- Victor M. Rios - The Hyper-Criminalization of Black and Latino Male Youth in the Era of Mass Incarceration
- Devah Pager - The Mark of a Criminal Record
- Todd R. Clear - Imprisoning Communities: How mass incanceration makes disadvantaged neighborhoods worse
- Bruce Western & Becky Pettit - Incarceration & social inequality
- Philippe Bourgois - In search of respect: Selling Crack in El Barrio (p. 76-113)
- Eva Rosen, Sudhir Alladi Venkatesh - A “Perversion” of Choice: Sex Work Offers Just Enough in Chicago’s Urban Ghetto
- Living Underground
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Elijah Anderson in his the Code of the Streets evaluated the types of crimes that that prevalent among the people within the low income areas. He noted that muggings, burglaries, carjacking and drug-related violence topped the list. According to him, the reasons behind these crimes are joblessness, racial stigma, violence that emanates from drug dealings and trafficking, and alienation and hopelessness. David Harding on the other side saw lack of good role models as one of the reasons. He posited that older people socialize young ones into negative street behaviors. Further, he noted that socialization that takes place in the society plays an important role in creating deviant youths.
Both scholars agree that agree that though the society is meant to have equal people, there are aspects of segregation that sprouts to unconventional tendencies like labeling. Young people are labeled as deviants by being judged according to where they come from. Anderson says that street families have created informal rules that govern how people carry out their daily business. For the rules to be followed, violence becomes a form of social control. When challenged by other...
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