Structural Failure Of The American Dream Essay

Structural Failure Of The American Dream Essay

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Further analysis of structural failure can be found through following J.T, which he can be seen as a failed product of the American dream, as he is college graduate who tried the legitimate pathway but failed to succeed, ultimately forcing him to a life of deviance to achieve material success. His participants in the organization are similar to J.T, as they are willingly taking the risk of federal imprisonment at abolished wages for the chance of hierarchical success in the organization. This is because “if you rose high enough in the Black Kings dynasty, and lived long enough, you could make an awful lot of money” (Venkatesh). In a sense, these people aiming for success are no different than the average person that hopes for financial success. Rather, it is the society that labels them as deviant because of their degradation of local communities. However, it must be noted, that these deviant criminals are just a product of their environment and come from the root of their ancestors. The Robert Taylor complex, for example, is only in its current state because of the previous tensions from black activists which then caused “law-enforcement officials [to] [deem] Robert Taylor too dangerous to patrol” (Venkatesh). The lack of government interest and funding in these impoverished areas are severely noticed, especially in the future generations of children residents as there are “just two social-service centers for nearly twenty thousand children” (Venkatesh).

The deviancy of these criminals may arise from them being a product of their environment, but they are no saint either. These drug dealers seem to make the residents suffer economically due to their drug habits, as noted that nearly “15 percent of the tenants were hard core ad...


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...neighbourhoods.

Overall, in Sudhir Venkatesh’s Gang Leader for a Day, Venkatesh’s adventure with J.T shows all the problems in prevalent in the lower-class Chicago neighbourhoods. The combination of structural issues and the industrial complex system does not help the strain on police departments and does nothing on a functionalist perspective to create a stable society. Moreover, the members of these gangs are simply a product of their environment, labeled as deviant due to their degradation of local communities. Most of the gang’s origins can be found in the early stages of the Robert Taylor complex, where the collapse and degradation of these low income communities started to decline. The allowance into J.T 's gang allows for us to see what is going on into these member 's lives, and shows us the risk they take for little chance at respect and material success.

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