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NCJ Number: 249547 Find in a Library
Title: Shifting Structure of Chicago's Organized Crime Network and the Women It Left Behind
Author(s): Christina M. Smith
Date Published: December 2015
Page Count: 233
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 2013-IJ-CX-0013
Sale Source: US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
810 Seventh Street, NW
Washington, DC 20531
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Report (Grant Sponsored); Report (Study/Research); Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Dissertation/Thesis; Document (Online)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Based in a relational theory of gender dynamics, this study examined gender inequality in the social networks of organized crime in Chicago in the first two decades of the twentieth century (1900-1919).
Abstract: The featured topic in this study is how gender inequality in the social networks of organized crime in Chicago intensified under the expanded criminal opportunities that emerged with the coming of Prohibition in 1920, which made it a crime to manufacture, sell, and transport intoxicating beverages. At the beginning of the twentieth century, Chicago organized crime revolved around the illicit entertainment economies of sex work and gambling, along with their legal protection and political corruption. Women were involved as sex workers, brothel managers/owners and gamblers, and they participated in a loosely connected social network with men who were police officers, gamblers, politicians, husbands, graft collectors, and bosses. Women participated with men in a small, decentralized network involved in illegal activities associated with sex work and gambling. When Prohibition ushered in new, illegal, and lucrative criminal activities, organized crime increased in size, strength, profits, and influence. The network became more centralized. Non-elite male participants forged business relationships with other more powerful men in the network. Women, on the other hand, had diminished roles in the actual operation of the centralized criminal network, making them social accessories rather than important ;players in generating criminal proceeds. The empirical foundation for this study consisted of archival documents, which were used to create a relational database with information on 3,321 individuals and their 15,861 social relationships. The author considers this study to be a unique measure of gender inequality in social networks and a relational theory of gender dynamics applicable to future research on organizations, criminal or otherwise. 15 figures, 9 tables, and approximately 130 bibliographic listings
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Female offenders; Gender issues; Illinois; NIJ final report; NIJ Resources; Organized crime; Sex discrimination; Social conditions; Social Networking
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