Understanding Gangs in Contemporary Latin America
Forthcoming in Scott H. Decker and David C. Pyrooz (eds.), Handbook of Gangs and Gang Responses, New York: Wiley, 2015
26 Pages Posted: 24 Jul 2014 Last revised: 30 Jul 2014
Date Written: July 22, 2014
This paper provides an overview of the current knowledge base about Latin American gangs, drawing principally on studies based on primary empirical research. It begins by focusing on the two most developed bodies of work, respectively on Central American and Brazilian gangs, before then considering the emergent literature on Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, and Venezuela. A number of long-standing, important cross-cutting themes are identified, as well as several new emergent ones, and a tentative agenda for future research proposed.
Keywords: Gangs, Latin America, Central America, Brazil, violence, crime, youth, drugs
JEL Classification: K42, N46
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation