Gang Leader for a Day

Gang Leader for a Day : A Rogue Sociologist Crosses the Line

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Sudhir Venkatesh the young sociologist who became famous in Freakonomics (Why do drug dealers still live with their moms?) describes his time living with the gangs on the Southside of Chicago and answers another question: What's it like to live in hell?

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  • Paperback | 320 pages
  • 152.4 x 231.14 x 25.4mm | 480.81g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • LondonUnited Kingdom
  • Export ed
  • 0713999942
  • 9780713999945
  • 259,009

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""Gang Leader for a Day" is not another voyeuristic look into the supposedly tawdry, disorganized life of the black poor. Venkatesh entered the Chicago gang world at the height of the crack epidemic and what he found was a tightly organized community, held together by friendship and compassion as well as force. I couldn't stop reading, and ended up loving this brave, reckless young scholar, as well as the gang leader J.T., who has to be one of the greatest characters ever to emerge from something that could be called sociological research." -- Barbara Ehrenreich ""Gang Leader for a Day" is an absolutely incredible book. Sudhir Venkatesh's memoir of his years observing life in Chicago's inner city is a book unlike any other I have read, equal parts comedy and tragedy. How is it that a naove suburban kid ends up running a crack gang (if only for a day) on his way to becoming one of the world's leading scholars? You have to read it to find out, but heed this warning: don't pick up the book unless you have a few hours to spare because I promise you will not be able to put it down once you start." --Steven D. Levitt, co-author, "Freakonomics" "This extraordinary book features the fascinating research of a brilliant young sociologist. Sudhir Venkatesh spent several years closely interacting with crack-selling gang members and struggling poor residents in a large and very dangerous public housing project in Chicago. His riveting portrait of day-to-day life in this poor community, including the challenges confronting parents in a drug-infested and violent social environment, is disturbing. But, "Gang Leader for a Day" is rich with original information and insights on poor families, drug dealers and even the police. It will leave an indelible impression on readers." ---William Julius Wilson, Harvard University Lewis P. and Linda L. Geyser Professor "Whether you enjoy fiction, history, or biography you'll be drawn to Venkatesh's gripping retelling of his experiences in the Ro

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About Sudhir Venkatesh

Sudhir Venkatesh spent a decade living with the Black Kings gang in Chicago's south side. His research later became famous in Freakonomics (Why do drug dealers still live with their moms?) He is now Professor of Sociology and African-American studies at Columbia University.

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