Thursday, 19 January 2017

Becoming a Drug Dealer: Local Interaction Orders and Criminal Careers

an article by Waverly Duck (possibly Yale University, New Haven, USA) published in Critical Sociology Volume 42 Issue 7-8 (November 2016)


This article reports on an ethnographic study of the process by which a young man became a drug dealer in a in a small northeastern US city. Drug dealing was the principal occupation in his predominantly black neighborhood.

This process is treated as an initiation into a criminal career that involved not only the mastery of specific steps of drug dealing but also learning the expectations of the local interaction order framing the space where he lives.

Approached in this way, one young man’s story offers a window into the local interaction order of a drug-dealing space: a set of local social practices that must be routinely mastered in the area where he grew up.

The pervasiveness of drug-dealing practices in the local interaction order offers valuable insight into how and why male youth in this locale would enter the drug trade and are at considerable risk of arrest.

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