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The Culture and Politics of Contemporary Street Gang Memoirs$
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Josephine Metcalf

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781617032813

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781617032813.001.0001

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Quick Reads for Reluctant Readers

Quick Reads for Reluctant Readers

Consuming Gang Memoirs

(p.149) Chapter Six Quick Reads for Reluctant Readers
The Culture and Politics of Contemporary Street Gang Memoirs

Josephine Metcalf

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter explores the impact of the street gang memoirs on their low-income, Los Angeles-based, and at-risk youth readers. It shows that the young readers of the memoirs did not generally see the representation of gangs in the memoirs as something exciting, but they saw it as something that they should stay away from. Additionally, young readers often started discussions about responsibility and self-determination regarding the topic of street gang violence. It demonstrates that young people have consciously drawn the line between themselves and the street, challenging the stereotypes imposed upon them as being easily tempted by the allure of street gang violence.

Keywords:   youth, street gang, violence, responsibility, self-determination, Los Angeles

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