Sudhir Venkatesh's Gang Leader For A Day

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Sudhir Venkatesh’s ethnography Gang Leader for a Day is a summary of his research through the University of Chicago in the 1990s. Venkatesh chose to do research on poor African-Americans in Chicago, and their experiences in public housing developments. He concentrated his study on the Robert Taylor Housing to better understand how residents lived and differentiated from those in other parts of the city. Venkatesh’s target population was those living in harsh living conditions, primarily black and poor. Throughout this paper, I will be addressing Venkatesh’s research and its limitations. I will also share my opinion on Venkatesh’s analysis and understanding of his findings about the residents, and how his experiences mesh with my own. In…show more content…
Toward the beginning, I thought that being involved with a gang would be very dangerous. Gangs did ended up being threatening for Venkatesh, with all of the shootings, fights, and other drama that occurred during his research. I learned that it is hard for people to just to able to walk into a foreign area and be accepted. For Venkatesh it was hard, but once he was able to bond with the gang leader, JT, he helped Venkatesh which greatly helped him with his research. Moreover, if I was the one who was walking into the resident’s building I think I would get looks even more than Venkatesh because I am younger, innocent, and of the opposite sex all of these characteristics would have an effect on me. This would have made all the difference, because I someone who would not know what to do with people of a different culture. I learned that everyone acts differently with other social classes and…show more content…
Moreover, my beliefs on poverty and gangs were different once I analyzed Venkatesh’s ethnography. In my views I thought that the poor were people who suffered without the essentials of life such as food, shelter, water, and the feeling of being safe. I would see people on the streets begging for money and donations, but I was always afraid that they would go and buy alcohol or cigarettes which are unhealthy for people. In my view, the poor are the ones that need help the most. They are the ones who have to scavenge for the necessities of life. When I was in middle school I was afraid of gangs, I was afraid that I would get shot from one of

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