skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 184402 Find in a Library
Title: Gang Members' Families (From Female Gangs in America: Essays on Girls, Gangs and Gender, P 159-176, 1999, Meda Chesney-Lind and John M. Hagedorn, eds. -- See NCJ-184395)
Author(s): Joan W. Moore
Date Published: 1999
Page Count: 18
Sponsoring Agency: Lake View Press
Chicago, IL 60657
Sale Source: Lake View Press
P.O. Box 578279
Chicago, IL 60657
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Book (Hardbound)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter examines gang members’ families as part of an attempt to determine why young people join gangs.
Abstract: The study was based on interviews with members of Mexican families in East Los Angeles, CA. The chapter considers questions relating to immigration, ethnicity, and parental economic status as well as the emotional climate in the household during respondents’ childhoods. The study found problems, sometimes severe, in many of the families. But the findings did not cast much light on the broader question of how family problems affect gang membership. For example, there was no way to tell whether the families studied had more problems than their neighbors in the barrio. In addition, the search for problems may itself be misleading. It assumes that there are just two kinds of families--good and bad--when most families are a mixture of the two. Perhaps the most significant finding was that there were so few differences between families in earlier and more recent cliques. Any notion that the passing generations either diminished or exacerbated family problems was generally not borne out by the data. Perhaps the strongest lesson is that, in earlier and more recent immigrant cliques, gang members come from troubled families. Table
Main Term(s): Juveniles
Index Term(s): Cultural influences; Family histories; Gang member attitudes; Gangs; Home environment; Immigrants/Aliens; Juvenile gang behavior patterns; Mexican Americans; Sociological analyses
Note: *This document is currently unavailable from NCJRS.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.