You are not currently logged in.
Access JSTOR through your library or other institution:
If You Use a Screen ReaderThis content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. 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.
Honor, Normative Ambiguity and Gang Violence
Ruth Horowitz and Gary Schwartz
American Sociological Review
Vol. 39, No. 2 (Apr., 1974), pp. 238-251
Published by: American Sociological Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2094235
Page Count: 14
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.
Preview not available
This paper examines the social context in which gang violence occurs in a Mexican American community. We argue that gang violence arises in situations where one party impugns the honor of his adversary. This sort of conduct violates the norms of interpersonal etiquette and constitutes, in Goffman's terminology, a violation of "personal space." Gang members fluctuate uneasily between conventional and honor bound responses to these kinds of insults. The paper outlines a theory of normative ambiguity that deals with this movement between two antithetical codes for conduct.
American Sociological Review © 1974 American Sociological Association