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Indigenous youth gangs as family


White, R, Indigenous youth gangs as family, Youth Studies Australia, 28, (3) pp. 47-56. ISSN 1038-2569 (2009) [Refereed Article]


Much of the conventional youth gang literature describes gangs as a sort of 'family' for members. The gang provides a source of support, solidarity and social connection, and thus fulfils some of the functions of a close-knit family unit. What happens, however, when the 'gang' and the 'family' are one and the same? This paper explores the ways in which Indigenous young people experience gang activity as stemming from family membership and family obligations. Indeed, the notion of 'gang' is itself highly contentious for many Indigenous youth, given that their group behaviour is intrinsically bound by cultural and kinship ties. Based on recent gang research in Australia, the paper provides firsthand accounts of what 'life in the gang/life in the family' means for Indigenous young people.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Criminology
Research Field:Criminology not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Law, Politics and Community Services
Objective Group:Justice and the law
Objective Field:Justice and the law not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:White, R (Professor Rob White)
ID Code:58847
Year Published:2009
Deposited By:Sociology and Social Work
Deposited On:2009-10-30
Last Modified:2015-02-23

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