gang

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gang,

group of people organized for a common purpose, often criminal. Gangs of criminals were long known on the American frontierfrontier,
in U.S. history, the border area of settlement of Europeans and their descendants; it was vital in the conquest of the land between the Atlantic and the Pacific.
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 and also flourished in urban settings. Notorious were the outlaws led by Jesse JamesJames, Jesse (Woodson),
1847–82, American outlaw, b. Clay co., Mo. At the age of 15 he joined the Confederate guerrilla band led by William Quantrill and participated in the brutal and bloody civil warfare in Kansas and Missouri.
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 and his brother, the Sydney Ducks of San Francisco (active in the 1850s), and the Hudson Dusters of turn-of-the-century New York City. Modern criminal gangs are largely urban and highly organized (see organized crimeorganized crime,
criminal activities organized and coordinated on a national scale, often with international connections. The American tradition of daring desperadoes like Jesse James and John Dillinger, has been superseded by the corporate criminal organization.
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). Adolescent gangs before World War II were generally poverty-area recreational groups that turned to crime under the influence of adult gangs. Often the groups were rehabilitated through recreational leadership and guidance in community centers. In the late 1940s fighting gangs arose in the poverty areas of most large cities. Uniting to seek security and status in a discouraging environment, the young members divide their neighborhoods into rival territories and amass homemade and stolen weapons. Boundary violations or other insults invite intergang fights in streets or parks. Most fighting gangs are organized intricately, with caste systems and with officers who arrange battles and prepare strategy; the gang may range in size from several members to over 100. Factors related to the development of delinquent gangs include blighted communities, dropping out of school, unemployment, family disorganization, neighborhood traditions of gang delinquency, psychopathology, and ethnic status. Gangs provide acceptance and protection to inner-city youth; in Los Angeles gangs doubled from 400 in 1985 to 800 (with 90,000 members) in 1990. See also juvenile delinquencyjuvenile delinquency,
legal term for behavior of children and adolescents that in adults would be judged criminal under law. In the United States, definitions and age limits of juveniles vary, the maximum age being set at 14 years in some states and as high as 21 years in others.
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.

Bibliography

See L. Yablonsky, The Violent Gang (1962, repr. 1970); M. W. Klein and B. G. Myerhoff, Juvenile Gangs in Context (1967); J. F. Short, ed., Gang Delinquency and Delinquent Subcultures (1968); E. Liebow, Talley's Corner (1968); J. Haskins, Street Gangs: Yesterday and Today (1977); W. F. Whyte, Streetcorner Society (1981); A. Campbell, Girls in the Gang (1984); E. Dolan, Youth Gangs (1984); L. Bing, Do or Die (1991).

What does it mean when you dream about a gang?

Dreaming of being a gang member may be an unconscious expression of the need to achieve things through force and intimidation. If threatened by a gang, one may feel that life conditions or the factors associated with a particular issue have “ganged up” on them.

gang

[gaŋ]
(electricity)
A mechanical connection of two or more circuit devices so that they can be varied at the same time.

gang

1. a herd of buffaloes or elks or a pack of wild dogs
2. 
a. a series of similar tools arranged to work simultaneously in parallel
b. (as modifier): a gang saw
References in periodicals archive ?
adults (67 percent) say that gang violence among youth is increasing as a result of the current economic climate.
When we allow gang violence to circulate, we allow it to rip into the fabric of life," says World Vision's Senior Youth Development Associate, Dr.
A caretaker at one of the schools died after being shot weeks ago, and a stray bullet from gang violence hit a primary school around that time as well, Casey said.
The network website also includes several municipal action guides on topics such as prevention, evaluation, street outreach and reentry services, as well as the network's toolkit on Preventing Gang Violence and Building Communities where Young People Thrive.
He said: "The Big Society has been delivered here and found solutions to the gang violence problem.
As crime, particularly drug use and gang violence, seeps into smaller communities, some townships are implementing procedures to deter its spreading.
Just a few years ago, Holy Cross buried six of its children taken by gang violence.
In Brazilian ant colonies where a female has to fight her way to the top, she stays in power through some judicious gang violence, say researchers.
I shed tears every time I hear news of another victim falling to gang violence," he writes.
Some parents and social workers said it was clearly a gang sign, and some accused the choreographer of promoting gang violence, exposing the children to retaliation by gangs and perpetuating negative stereotypes about Southeast Asians.
Addressing Continued Spread of Gang Violence Nationwide, New Program Integrates Diversity Education Into Fight Against Gangs
Marcia, whose daughter was innocently caught up in gang violence, will tell pupils of her own heartache.