gangs


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Financial, Acronyms, Idioms.
Related to gangs: Gangsta, games, gags, Hells Angels

gangs

relatively closed groups of (usually) working-class youth, with identifiable leadership roles, and often associated with particular territories and deviant activity. The first sociological work on gangs was influenced by the interactionist perspective developed by the CHICAGO SCHOOL. Subsequent classic studies (e.g. Cohen, 1955; Whyte, 1955) continued to employ this perspective, examining the way in which individuals were socialized into the SUBCULTURE of the group, the nature of the value system which this represented, and its function for individual members. More recently, sociological research has examined the MORAL PANICS created by gangs of MODS AND ROCKERS (Cohen, 1973) and by FOOTBALL HOOLIGANISM (Taylor, 1971; Marsh et al., 1978; Dunning et al., 1988). Most of the classic studies of gangs have been concerned with white working-class youth, indicating the need for further empirical work in the area of race, ethnicity and gender. See also CRIMINOLOGY, DELINQUENCY, DELINQUENT SUBCULTURE, LABELLING THEORY, FOLK DEVILS, DEVIANCE AMPLIFICATION, RESISTANCE THROUGH RITUAL.
References in classic literature ?
Cheese-Face wanted to demur, - Martin could see that, - but Cheese- Face's old perilous pride was touched before the two gangs.
It was a weird sight, there on the killing beds--a throng of stupid black Negroes, and foreigners who could not understand a word that was said to them, mixed with pale-faced, hollow-chested bookkeepers and clerks, half-fainting for the tropical heat and the sickening stench of fresh blood--and all struggling to dress a dozen or two cattle in the same place where, twenty-four hours ago, the old killing gang had been speeding, with their marvelous precision, turning out four hundred carcasses every hour!
It was the commencement of his gang, to be augmented, as the boat moved on, by various other merchandise of the same kind, which he, or his agent, had stored for him in various points along shore.
It's to swear to stand by one another, and never tell the gang's secrets, even if you're chopped all to flinders, and kill anybody and all his family that hurts one of the gang.
He said, some of it, but the rest was out of pirate-books and robber-books, and every gang that was high-toned had it.
This circumstance induced Gurth to believe both that the gang was strong in numbers, and that they kept regular guards around their place of rendezvous.
Then came the day when Hughie reprimanded one of the boys and was nearly killed by the gang.
He must be going this journey to help the Bow Street officers to identify some one of our scattered gang of whom they were in pursuit.
I lay in the shade, brushing the flies off and directing operations, while Saxtorph bossed his hospital gang.
He came at length to where a steep rock intervened between him and the gang, for he saw the light of their lantern shining up against the branches of the trees on the other side.
They went deliberately, stopping to see what each gang was doing, as if they were on an ordinary round of inspection.
At Yea, on the other hand, the personation and robbery would ever after be attributed to a member of the gang that had waylaid and murdered the new manager with that very object.