Advertisement

Living in the Shadow of Death: Gangs, Violence, and Social Order in Urban Nicaragua, 1996–2002

  • Dennis Rodgers
Chapter
Part of the Studies of the Americas book series (STAM)

Abstract

The past two decades have seen crime increasingly recognized as a critical social concern. Crime rates have risen globally by an average of 50 percent over the past 25 years, and the phenomenon is widely considered to contribute significantly to human suffering all over the world (Ayres 1998). This is particularly true in Latin America, where contemporary violence has reached unprecedented levels due to rising crime and delinquency (Londoño et al. 2000). This trend has been widely linked to a perceived shift in the political economy of violence in post-Cold War Latin America, with the most visible expressions of brutality no longer stemming from ideological conflicts over the nature of politics, as in the past, but from more “prosaic” forms of everyday violence (Caldeira 1996: 199). Violence in Latin America has arguably “democratized,” ceasing to be “the resource of only the traditionally powerful or of the grim uniformed guardians of the nation and increasingly appear[ing] as an option for a multitude of actors in pursuit of all kinds of goals” (Kruijt and Koonings 1999: 11). These new dynamics are seen to be linked to a regional “crisis of governance,” whereby economic liberalization, weak democratization, and intensifying globalization have undermined states and their ability to command a monopoly over t he use of violence. The emergence of “disorderly” forms of criminal violence epitomizes this declining political authority, and signals a rising social chaos (de Rivero 2001).

Keywords

Gang Member Criminal Violence Youth Gang Drug Economy Social Structuration 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Bibliography

  1. Anderson, B. 1983. Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism, London: Verso.Google Scholar
  2. Arendt, H. 1969. On Violence, New York: Harcourt Brace.Google Scholar
  3. Ayres, R. 1998. Crime and Violence as Development Issues in Latin America and the Caribbean, World Bank Latin American and Caribbean Studies Viewpoint Studies Series, Washington: The World Bank.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Beck, U. 1996. World risk society as cosmopolitan society? Ecological questions in a framework of manufactured uncertainties, Theory, Culture & Society, vol. 13, no. 4, pp. 1–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bloch, H. A., and A. Niederhoffer. 1958. The Gang: A Study in Adolescent Behavior, New York: Philosophical Library.Google Scholar
  6. Bloch, M. 1996. La “consommation” des jeunes hommes chez les Zafimaniry de Madagascar, in F. Héritier (ed.), De la Violence, Paris: Odile Jacob, pp. 201–222.Google Scholar
  7. Cajina, R. J. 2000. Nicaragua: De la seguridad del Estado a la inseguridad ciudadana, in A. Serbin and D. Ferreyra (eds.), Gobernabilidad Democrática y Seguridad Ciudadana en Centroamérica: El Caso de Nicaragua, Managua: CRIES, pp. 157–183.Google Scholar
  8. Caldeira, T. P. R. 1996. Crime and individual rights: Reframing the question of violence in Latin America, in E. Jelin and E. Hershberg (eds.), Constructing Democracy: Human Rights, Citizenship, and Society in Latin America, Boulder: Westview Press, pp. 197–211.Google Scholar
  9. Cloward, R., and L. Ohlin. 1960. Delinquency and Opportunity: A Theory of Delinquent Gangs, Glencoe: Free Press.Google Scholar
  10. Cohen, A. K. 1955. Delinquent Boys: The Culture of the Gang, Glencoe: Free Press.Google Scholar
  11. Covey, H. C., S. Menard, and R. J. Franzese. 1992. Juvenile Gangs, Springfield: Charles C. Thomas Publisher.Google Scholar
  12. de Rivero, O. 2001. The Myth of Development: The Non-viable Economies of the 21st Century, London: Zed.Google Scholar
  13. Douglas, M. 1987. How Institutions Think, London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  14. Godnick, W., R. Muggah, and C. Waszink. 2002. Stray Bullets: The Impact of Small Arms Misuse in Central America, Small Arms Survey Occasional Paper No. 5, Geneva: Small Arms Survey.Google Scholar
  15. Hage, G. 2003. “Comes a time we are all enthusiasm”: Understanding Palestinian suicide bombers in times of exighophobia, Public Culture, vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 65–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hannerz, U. 1969. Soulside: Inquiries into Ghetto Culture and Community, New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Horowitz, R. 1990. Sociological perspectives on gangs: Conflicting definitions and concepts, in C. R. Huff (ed.), Gangs in America, Newbury Park: Sage, pp. 37–54.Google Scholar
  18. Isbester, K. 1996. Understanding state disintegration: The case of Nicaragua, The Journal of Social, Political and Economic Studies, vol. 21, no. 4, pp. 455–476.Google Scholar
  19. Kruijt, D., and K. Koonings. 1999. Introduction: Violence and fear in Latin America, in K. Koonings and D. Kruijt (eds.), Societies of Fear: The Legacy of Civil War, Violence and Terror in Latin America, London: Zed, pp. 1–27.Google Scholar
  20. Lancaster, R. 1992. Life is Hard: Machismo, Danger, and the Intimacy of Power in Nicaragua, Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  21. Latham, R. 2000. Social sovereignty, Theory, Culture & Society, vol. 17, no. 4, pp. 1–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Londoño, J. L., A. Gaviria, and R. Guerrero (eds.). 2000. Asalto al Desarrollo: Violencia en América Latina, Washington: Inter-American Development Bank.Google Scholar
  23. Montoya, R. 2003. House, street, collective: Revolutionary geographies and gender transformation in Nicaragua, 1979–99, Latin American Research Review, vol. 38, no. 2, pp. 61–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Moser, C., and A. Winton. 2002. Violence in the Central American Region: Towards an Integrated Framework for Violence Reduction, Overseas Development Institute Working Paper No. 171, London: ODI.Google Scholar
  25. Nitlapán-Envío team. 1995. The crisis is bordering on the intolerable, Envío (in English), no. 167, June, pp. 3–13.Google Scholar
  26. Núñez, J. C. 1996. De la Ciudad al Barrio: Redes y Tejidos Urbanos en Guatemala, El Salvador y Nicaragua, Ciudad de Guatemala: Universidad Rafael Landívar/PROFASR.Google Scholar
  27. Policía Nacional de Nicaragua (Nicaraguan National Police). 2001. Boletín de la Actividad Delictiva, no. 32, http://www.policia.gob.ni/boletin32.htm [accessed April 3, 2002].Google Scholar
  28. Rocha, J. L. 2000. Pandillero: La mano que empuña el mortero, Envío, March, http://www.uca.edu.ni/publicaciones/revistas/envio/2000/esp/MARZO/Pandilleros.htm [accessed April 3, 2002].
  29. Rodgers, D. 2004a. La globalización de un barrio desde abajo: Emigrantes, remesas, taxis, y drogas, Envío, no. 264, March, pp. 23–30.Google Scholar
  30. Rodgers, D. 2004b. Disembedding the city: Crime, insecurity, and spatial organisation in Managua, Nicaragua, Environment and Urbanization, vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 113–124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Sánchez Jankowski, M. 1991. Islands in the Street: Gangs and American Urban Society, Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  32. Serbin, A., and D. Ferreyra (eds.). 2000. Gobernabilidad Democrática y Seguridad Ciudadana en Centroamérica: El Caso de Nicaragua, Managua: CRIES.Google Scholar
  33. Sosa Melendez, J. J., and J. L. Rocha. 2001. Las pandillas en Nicaragua, in ERIC, IDESO, IDIES, and IUDOP (eds.), Maras y Pandillas en Centroamérica, vol. 1, Managua: UCA Publicaciones, pp. 333–430.Google Scholar
  34. Taylor, C. 2002. Modern social imaginaries, Public Culture, vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 91–124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Tilly, C. 2002. Warmaking and state making as organized crime, in C. Besteman (ed.), Violence: A Reader, New York: Palgrave Macmillan [Orig. 1985], pp. 35–60.Google Scholar
  36. Whyte, W. F. 1943. Street Corner Society: The Structure of an Italian Slum, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  37. Yablonsky, L. 1963. The Violent Gang, New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Gareth A. Jones and Dennis Rodgers 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dennis Rodgers

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations