Nancy Stein, Susan Roberta Katz, Esther Madriz, and Shelley Shick, eds.
Youth violence is among the most hotly debated and most deeply misunderstood issues today. The “gangsta” has become the new red menace of the 1990s, the target of societal fears in a time of a widening gap between the rich and the poor. Poor youth of color are held particularly suspect of street crimes. The myth and reality of youth violence have become so intertwined that the true causes and effective solutions are obscured. Today, the myths about youth and crime are driving policy development in the area of juvenile justice. A thoroughgoing attack is taking place not only on youth, but also on the juvenile justice system. The trend of the last 30 years to deinstitutionalize young people and to create community-based alternatives is now being reversed in favor of an intensified focus on incarceration and punishment. Federal and state legislation now sidesteps prevention and rehabilitation in favor of more punitive policies. Along with attacks on welfare recipients and immigrants, juvenile offenders have been portrayed as outside the “norms” of society, undeserving of protection or support. This issue of Social Justice counters the myths of youth violence and probes the living realities in schools, the community, and the juvenile justice system. Articles highlight the situation of urban youth of color, who have been identified as the “Other” and further marginalized. It gives voice to African American youth’s poetry and raps that critique violence, Latinos’ fights against teachers’ expectations that they will join gangs, and young women of color’s struggles for survival and equity in the juvenile justice system. Solutions to youth violence incorporate the perspectives of youth. The issue also focuses on the lives of girls, who have been consistently neglected in the criminology literature.
Purchase articles (click on the author link to read the abstract and buy the pdf):
Editors, Losing a Generation: Probing the Myths and Realities of Youth and Violence [Free Download]
Luis J. Rodriguez, Hearts and Hands: A New Paradigm for Work with Youth and Violence
Jeff Ferrell, Youth, Crime, and Cultural Space
Esther Madriz, Latina Teenagers: Victimization, Identity, and Fear of Crime
Jabari Mahiri, Street Scripts: African American Youth Writing about Crime and Violence
Susan Roberta Katz, Presumed Guilty: How Schools Criminalize Latino Youth
Paul A. Perrone and Meda Chesney-Lind, Representations of Gangs and Delinquency: Wild in the Streets?
Jeanette Covington, The Social Construction of the Minority Drug Problem
Karen A. Joe Laidler and Geoffrey Hunt, Violence and Social Organization in Female Gangs
Edward J. Loughran, The Massachusetts Experience: A Historical Review of Reform in the Department of Youth Services
Laurie Schaffner, Shelley Shick, and Nancy Stein, Changing Policy in San Francisco: Girls in the Juvenile Justice System
Delores D. Jones-Brown and Zelma Weston Henriquez, Promises and Pitfalls of Mentoring as a Juvenile Justice Strategy
Joani Marinoff, There Is Enough Time: Rethinking the Process of Policy Development
John Brown Childs, The New Youth Peace Movement: Creating Broad Strategies for Community Renaissance in the United States
Nancy Stein Interviews Michael Zinzun, The Gang Truce: A Movement for Social Justice