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Homicide and a Regional Culture of Violence

Raymond D. Gastil
American Sociological Review
Vol. 36, No. 3 (Jun., 1971), pp. 412-427
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2093082
Page Count: 16
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Homicide and a Regional Culture of Violence
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Abstract

The homicide rate in the United States has been very high relative to the rest of the modernized world for as far back as evidence is available. It has long been known that in the United States there is a wide variation in the rates of different races and between North and South. Both qualitative historical evidence and multiple regressions indicate that the degree of "Southerness" in the culture of the population of the states accounts for more of the variation in homicide rates than do other factors such as income, education, percent urban, or age. It is suggested that high homicide rates in the United States today are related primarily to the persistence of Southern cultural traditions developed before the Civil War and subsequently spreading over much of the country.

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