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© 2020

Scotland’s Gang Members

Life and Crime in Glasgow

Book

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxi
  2. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 1-27
  3. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 29-49
  4. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 51-70
  5. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 71-88
  6. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 89-108
  7. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 109-126
  8. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 127-153
  9. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 155-162
  10. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 163-175
  11. Robert McLean, James A. Densley
    Pages 177-184
  12. Back Matter
    Pages 185-188

About this book

Introduction

"Scotland’s Gang Members successfully harmonizes gang research and narrative criminology. McLean and Densley defy convention by interweaving in-depth life history accounts with core substantive themes in the literature. They expertly situate people within places and institutions, groups and networks. The challenges young people face in navigating family, school, neighborhood, and imprisonment are laid bare. The evolving gang landscape, including its territoriality, relationships, and conflicts, is captured excellently. Readers will depart with a new understanding of gangs and violence and hope for the future of young people in Glasgow and beyond."

David C. Pyrooz, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado Boulder

"This is a first rate text, carefully researched, refreshingly creative and innovative in approach. It is accessibly written not only for academics and practitioners but also for the general public. A must-read for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the structural backdrop of gang violence and its relationship with organised crime in the West of Scotland."

Ross Deuchar, Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice, University of the West of Scotland

Drawing on extensive life-history interviews with serious violent offenders, this book offers a unique socio-historical analysis of gang membership and gang evolution in Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city. The book chronicles the lives of young men in and around Glasgow from early childhood to present day and examines the lived experience of family, friendship, community, and crime. It demonstrates how street reputations are won and lost and how gang membership is not a single event but an experiential process of offending, victimisation, consensus, and conflict. The book follows the young men’s descent into knife crime and street violence and the impact of imprisonment on their life chances. Detailed narratives capture how they individually and collectively transitioned from street violence to profit-driven organised crime, before eventually disengaging from gangs and desisting from offending. The book concludes with an in-depth discussion of the evolution of gangs and organised crime in the 21st century and in the inner-workings of Scotland’s marketplace for illegal goods and services, with implications for police, practitioners, and policymakers. A page-turner from start to finish, Scotlands’ Gang Members is a truly unique contribution to knowledge about gangs and crime, written to high academic standards but readable and accessible to all.  

Robert McLean is Lecturer in the Interdisciplinary Research Unit on Crime, Policing and Social Justice at the University of the West of Scotland, UK.

James Densley is Professor and Chair of the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice at Metropolitan State University, USA, part of the Minnesota State system.

Keywords

Policing Social Work Organised Crime Knife Crime Drugs Youth Justice Paisley Drug Wars Gangs and Drugs Policing Gangs Social Policy Gang Policy

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Interdisciplinary Research Unit on Crime, Policing and Social JusticeUniversity of the West of ScotlandPaisleyUK
  2. 2.School of Law Enforcement & Criminal JusticeMetropolitan State UniversitySaint PaulUSA

About the authors

Robert McLean is Lecturer in the Interdisciplinary Research Unit on Crime, Policing and Social Justice at the University of the West of Scotland, UK.

James Densley is Professor and Chair of the School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice at Metropolitan State University, USA, part of the Minnesota State system.

Bibliographic information

Reviews

"Scotland’s Gang Members successfully harmonizes gang research and narrative criminology. McLean and Densley defy convention by interweaving in-depth life history accounts with core substantive themes in the literature. They expertly situate people within places and institutions, groups and networks. The challenges young people face in navigating family, school, neighborhood, and imprisonment are laid bare. The evolving gang landscape, including its territoriality, relationships, and conflicts, is captured excellently. Readers will depart with a new understanding of gangs and violence and hope for the future of young people in Glasgow and beyond."

David C. Pyrooz, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado Boulder

"This is a first rate text, carefully researched, refreshingly creative and innovative in approach. It is accessibly written not only for academics and practitioners but also for the general public. A must-read for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the structural backdrop of gang violence and its relationship with organised crime in the West of Scotland."

Ross Deuchar, Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice, University of the West of Scotland