An Analysis of the Book In Search for Respect by Philippe Bourgois

An Analysis of the Book In Search for Respect by Philippe Bourgois

Document details
Category: Anthropology Essay
Subcategory: Cultural Anthropology
Words: 783
Pages: 2

In Search of Respect An Analysis of the Work of Bourgois In his book, In Search of Respect, Philippe Bourgois discussed his experiences living in El Barrio (East Harlem). An interesting new insight into the street culture found in New York was captured in this book. The amount of poverty in this portion of our country is much higher than that in most other areas. Bourgois argues that this neighborhood, which is well known for high rates of violence, does not have widespread violence occurring amongst all of its members. The higher crime rate, argues Bourgois, occurs for the most part within the factions of the underground economy. Some insight into this economy would explain the reasons for higher rates of violence. This book is a summary of the events that occurred during Bourgois stay in El Barrio. The original purpose of the book was to write a first-hand account of poverty and ethnic segregation in the heart of one of the worlds largest cities. Bourgois was swept into the area drug economy because of the abundance of information from the dealers and their families who all lived within the immediate area. The problem was so prevalent that the focus of the book was changed to deal exclusively with the underground drug economy. Most of the accounts given in the book come from a single crack house near Bourgois tenement. The group of crack dealers filtered through Bourgois present a compelling argument that reform within the economy needs to take place in order to reduce the amount of violence within the inner-cities of the United States. Bourgois states that there is a strong feeling of community among the people living in El Barrio. Those people not involved in the drug market rarely encounter violence themselves because the dealers have nothing to fear from them. Bourgois states that, during the day, children are safely left to play in the streets unattended by their parents. At...

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