Mafia Subculture

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Sociology 101
11/17/05
Subculture Paper

In today's lifetime, there are numerous different cultures that are continuing to develop. We look at culture as a way of expressing behavior patterns, arts, beliefs, institutions, and all other products of human work. But with these ways, our cultures are being divided into countercultures, which are typically carried out by the younger generation with values or lifestyles in hostility to those of the established culture. A subculture social group within a world culture that has distinguishing pattern of behavior and beliefs. An example of a division of culture would be the Mafia, an organized crime family or business. The members in this group share and are committed to a common set of norms and values. The Mafias lifestyle principles are directly opposed to those of the dominant society. The meaning the Mob affiliates has a behavior that serves to unite them at the same time, which separates them from normal American culture.

Many characteristic titles are given to the organized crime or mob. The people that construct these groups are viewed as killers. But our culture tends not to view the organized crime subculture for what it really is. An organized crime enterprise is a criminal group that provides unlawful goods or services on a regular basis. An example would be a narcotics wholesaler. Therefore it is a criminal firm, family or business organization. (Reppetto p.26) The mafia's made membership in the United States in 1963 was approximately 5,000. Twenty-five hundred of these were in five families in New York City; 300 or more were in Chicago, the other major city of widespread organized crime activity, under one family. Recognition of the common ethnic tie of the members of the mafia is necessary to understanding its organization. (MacNee p.30) The mafia was a form of behavior and a kind of power. Members were known as "soldiers" or "wise guys." The soldiers were the individuals, mainly young middle-aged...
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