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Tusen fiender: En studie om de svenska gaturgängen och dess ledare
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
2013 (Swedish)Licentiate thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Gangs in its various manifestations, be it local, itinerant street gangs or sophisticated international criminal groups, are an increasing problem for our societies. Gangs seriously undermine public trust, including official institutions such as the law enforcement and the social services. The prevention of, and fight against, gangs is therefore a priority at national as well as at international level. This dissertation is based on two studies. In the first study, I have investigated the application of the Maxson and Klein gang typology on a dataset of seven Swedish street gangs. Individual-level data on 239 gang members were analysed. Findings support the utility of the Maxson and Klein typology and suggest a similar pattern of gang development and structure as in American and European street gangs. In the second study, I have combined ethnographic fieldwork observations with twelve in-depth interviews with Swedish street gang leaders and twelve associate gang members to understand the incentives behind street gang leadership and gang membership by delineating the multiple themes of the subjects’ narratives. A descriptive and interpretive analysis of the data suggested four ideal-types, each with specific goals, aspirations, and motives, which accord with a limited though diverse literature on gang leadership that has primarily emerged in the United States. In terms of policy, the analysis contains important lessons for agencies involved in social control efforts against street gangs and similar subcultures by focusing on the heterogeneous roles and influences of gang hierarchies. Further, the analysis reiterates the need for a more nuanced understanding of street gangs and the structured agency of members within their own narrative accounts. In terms of research, these findings suggest a need for further in-depth, holistic studies to create a more empirically grounded gang leader typology.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Kalmar, Växjö: Linnéuniversitetet , 2013. , 150 p.
Linnaeus University studies in policing, 2013:1
National Category
Social Work
Research subject
Social Sciences, Poliskunskap
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-41409OAI: diva2:798336
Available from: 2015-03-26 Created: 2015-03-26 Last updated: 2015-05-23Bibliographically approved

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