Gangs, Schools, and Social Change: An Institutional Analysis
PublisherSAGE Publications Inc.
MetadataShow full item record
Understanding gangs and schools requires us to go beyond neighborhood-level analysis because spatial analyses tend to downplay or ignore social movements as key to fundamental change. This article supplements a traditional ecological approach with an institutional analysis of both schools and gangs. A history of Chicago gangs reveals that gangs are not one thing; at times they have played positive roles within schools and taken part in social movements. The author’s personal experiences with gangs and schools in Milwaukee and Chicago are presented as evidence documenting the mutability of gangs, the damaging consequences of some educational policies, and the importance of including gang members in social movements. The current Black Lives Matter movement presents opportunities for nonincremental, disruptive change and the potential inclusion of gangs and gang members in a broader strategy to create a better society. © 2017, © 2017 by The American Academy of Political and Social Science.