Code of the Street

Topics: Family, The Streets, Sociology Pages: 8 (1926 words) Published: April 30, 2014
Code of the Street
The introduction chapter first explains the different types of neighborhoods that the city of Philadelphia has and each of the risks that go along with each neighborhood. Some of the neighborhoods are predominantly white, some are racially mixed, and some are predominately black. In the white-middle class neighborhoods, the neighborhood farthest away from the core downtown area, there is little crime and upscale restaurants and stores. In the racially mixed neighborhood the blacks and whites tend to get along but the whites are still aware that blacks are around. In the black neighborhoods public decency gets little respect. The author explains a story about a women stopping her car in the middle of the street and nobody says a word or beeps a horn. This is because nobody wants to start an uproar or see the women’s wrath. “This way, the code of the street provides an element of social organization and actually lessens the probability of violence. Code of the Street

The main problems in the inner-black communities, is the interpersonal violence and aggression. This aggression and violence is the result from the lack of jobs, limited public services, the stigma of race, the fallout from rampant drug use, and drug trafficking on the streets. The street culture has evolved a “code of the street”, which amounts to a set of informal rules governing interpersonal public behavior, particularly violence. In the code of the streets everything is revolved around respect. With respect, people have peace and security in public. The respect needed in a city like Philadelphia can cause people to do wrong things, but respect is needed to live in a city like Philadelphia.

Chapter 1 Decent and Street Families
The beginning of chapter one explains that “decent” and “street” labels is the result of a social contest among individuals and families of the neighborhood. Even though a person might be a “decent”, that person might act like a “street”. Even though a person might be a “street” that person might act like a “decent”. This action is called code switching. Decent teenagers are more often engage in code switching. This is because decent people don’t get the same respect as “street” people on the streets of Philadelphia. This causes decent people to do the same actions of street people. Street people pride themselves on living the thug life. These people are usually highly intelligent but lack the education needed. The street people tend to embrace the street code to the max and will live and die on the street. Decent Families

From what I took from that section of the chapter is that decent families from the inner cities pride themselves on being like middle class nuclear families. The decent family prides themselves on working hard and making do with what they have. The decent family saves their money for material things. The decent family instills a sense of responsibility in its younger members. Most decent families have the father still living with them. The father is usually the head of the household and sets rules for his children. He is a very strict man trying to keep his children away from the street life.

Street Families
The street family lives by the code of the street. These families have very little resources compared to the decent family. The lives of street-oriented families are usually disorganized. Bills are usually unpaid but instead money will be spent on drugs, cigarettes, and liquor. Street families are usually considered to be lowlifes or bad people and are seen as a bad influence on the community. The kids of street families have it the hardest. These kids usually live in homes of crack addict mothers and drug dealing fathers. The kids learn from their parents and tend to grow up to be the same things. This is an example of the social learning theory. This is a prime example because the kids are learning this from the parents and then...
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