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Code of the Street: Decency, Violence, and the Moral Life of the Inner City Paperback – Abridged, September 17, 2000
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As an African American himself, Anderson moves through the middle- and lower-class Philadelphia neighborhoods with ease, interviewing a variety of subjects, all of whom deal daily with consequences of urban decay--from the high-achieving young woman who had to reject her poorer relatives to better herself, to the former delinquent who tries to go straight after returning from prison. For Anderson, these are the true heroes of Code of the Street: people who overcome the temptations of the streets to help create a better space for the next generation. --Eugene Holley Jr. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
As a young black man that grew up in a two parent home in suburban Maryland, I was extremely confused when I left my small town for middle school. It was there that I was first exposed to black children with less fortunate financial backgrounds, single parent homes, and low value of education and order. As Anderson explains, even in the suburban regions of Maryland adjacent to D.C. inner city attitudes, styles, trends, and even volatility can be seen in young blacks as a result of 'cultural diffusion'. A phenomenon which has a peculiar property of moving up the socioeconomic ladder in the black community.
What I appreciate about Mr. Anderson's book most is that it has finally helped me to answer the question of 'WHY', which has tormented me for almost 15 years. Why have I found myself to be different than many of my black peers as a young man and an adult when all I wanted was a good education, a good job, and to live a decent life. EVERY person, Black or White who has found themself glaring at the low socioeconomic black community and wondering what is wrong, or quoting Bill Cosby Rhetoric while watching a group of hoodlums bully any and everyone off of the sidewalk, or turning up your nose at a pregnant 19 year old girl yelling at her toddler as she mopes down the sidewalk... YOU MUST READ THIS BOOK. Understanding is the beginning of dealing with what has become everyone's problem.
I grew up in nice places to volunteer and nice hospitals that took our private insurance. I went to hospitals filled with people like me who were autistic nerds and geeks who were clueless about society in general. About inner city urban street thug life and the mentally that goes with it we knew nothing. Towards the time I became an adult drugs were only just beginning to destroy my childhood home turning it from a secluded enclave to a drug infested hell hole. In my day the code of the street was being a good person, respectful honest and hard working.
I am no better than the thugs of the street but, I am indeed a different type of black man than those I see infesting urban ghettos. I regularly ride the horrilble public transit bus system in Baltimore, Maryland. I earn a spectacular living but I am also unable to drive due to my autism and many other disabilities.Read more ›
I appreciated that Anderson laid the facts out without playing the blame game. His writing is objective but also compassionate; you can really see *individuals,* not just "black people." I closed the book thinking, "Well, I can't change everything, but with this knowledge I can sure make changes in myself, and at least that's a start." It takes a great book to provide that kind of power and inspiration. Just for that alone, I think every white person should read this book.
So, Bravo, Mr. Anderson! Please continue to write on the subject!
The first point is that most people in the inner-city are 'decent' -- they adhere to the mainstream middle-class values of hard work and playing by the rules. The 'street' element, is in the minority. However, it is a situation in which the minority rules. Even people who are or strive to be 'decent' must know the code of the street, and in some situations be willing to abide by it, if they want to be able to survive.
The second point is that most of society is unwilling or unable to distinguish the 'decent' from the 'street'. We put the entire community into the same negative category of 'street.' There are plenty of people -- especially young men -- who are, Anderson argues, 'going for bad' just as a defense posture. The problem is that once these people adopt the appearance, language, and demeanor of the 'street,' many outsiders no longer recognize or accept them as decent. They can't get a legitimate job, so they turn to drugs or other criminal activity to earn a living. They're damned if they do and damned if they don't.
The third point is that the code of the street emerged because industry abandoned American cities, and people who could afford to move out to the suburbs did, leaving behind a wasteland where even law enforcement is seen as unresponsive and unhelpful. The inner city is like the Wild West, in which vigilante justice fills the void left by law and order. The code of the street is a necessary alternative -- if you can't count on the police to protect you, then you have to be able to protect yourself.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I purchased this book as a required text for a class. It's informative. It served it's purpose. I had to write a paper on it. It did keep my attention.Published 3 months ago by Guy
Item was received so quickly and works perfectly fine. I recommend everyone to buy from this seller whenever they need a product like this. Thank you very much!!Published 5 months ago by Solomon Tia
This book explains 99% of hip hop and rap, if nothing else.
In all seriousness, I read the reviews and bought the book because they were so positive. Read more