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Final Paper

3552 words - 15 pages

Essay 1:
Explain how Bourgois’s In Search of Respect and Contreras’s Stickup Kids locates the inner lives of drug dealers and drug robbers with the context of history, structure, and culture? In your discussions, explain how culture is a creative response to collectively experienced structural problems within a historical context. Be as specific as possible in your response using examples from the literature and class discussion.
Bourgois locates the inner lives of drug dealers and drug robbers by talking about the early 1990’s. He states that in the context of history, your life is shaped by historical moments that you live in. You make choices of the moment in structural conditions. He starts by telling the story of a boy named Gus and how violence and crack was normal for him growing up. He talks about how at 13 Gus shifts and fell into the teenage drug selling team. He tells how Gus moved up in the business and ran the crack selling business Monday through Saturday noon to midnight. Gus felt he was getting played because he was only making $600 while being there every day all day. After a while of wanting to make more, he left the business and started his own business independently. After being charged with multiple convictions, he was sent to Rikers Island. Next Bourgois introduced Pablo. Pablo attended school in the Bronx and joined the junior varsity team. He also talks about how he was good at football and quickly moved up to the varsity level. He was really good at ball and wanted to move up in life. He attended college and like normal college students, he struggled. He struggled with passing classes and having money. He would ask his mother for money, but she would never have any to give him. He later met somebody that gave him the hook ups to Gus. He was so surprised at how much money Gus had, that he wanted to make that much. Pablo then also started selling crack like Gus. After Bourgois told the background stories of Gus and Pablo he stated “combined with a marginal neighborhood, terrible public schools, little social capital, and the crack era, this increased of being sucked into the illegal drug market”. This can explain how Gus and Pablo got into this business because they have always been associated with it. He goes back to talk about drug problems in past history such as the rebellions in 1960, crack dealers flooding the streets in 1980, and the issues rising in the 1990’s like the marijuana issues. By looking back at the past issues, they can explain the problems rising today. People that were born in the crack era were more likely to move up and join the epidemic because that’s what their social history showed them. By growing up at the end of the crack era, is how Gus and Pablo moved into making fast cash by joining the dealing business. Bourgois goes into detail of the ups and downs of the business. He talks about how after the crack epidemic, there was an after math of violence. Gus and Pablo found themselves in many...

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