Gang Leader for a Day.
Sudhir Venkatesh is a young sociologist who studied a Chicago crack-dealing gang from the inside. Gang Leader for a Day is a phenomenal story of how a young sociologist managed to gain entrance into the gang, what he learned, and how his method revolutionized the academic establishment. When Venkatesh walked into an abandoned building in one of Chicago’s most dangerous housing projects, he was looking for people to take a multiple choice survey about their housing and living. He never imagined that as a result of the assignment he would befriend a gang leader named JT and spend the better part of his life inside the projects under JT’s protection, documenting what he saw there.
Over the next seven years, Sudhir got to know the neighborhoods dealers, crack heads, squatters, prostitutes, pimps, cops, and officials. He went from a privileged family to learning how the poor and needy people live and survive with notorious gang members living among them. He observed JT and the rest of the gang as they worked their crack-selling business. He got to witness how the gangs take care of their community and protect the people living in it. I would imagine Sudhir having lots of reasons of why he did this, and no one will really know expect for him. I think what is did was a very brave thing because a lot of people wouldn’t stop their life and follow a gang member around and analyze how is lives and survives.
This is an intense book that…