SAGE Journal Articles

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Article 1: Esbensen, Finn-Aage & Frank M. Weerman (January 2005). Youth Gangs and Troublesome Youth Groups in the United States and the Netherlands: A Cross-National Comparison. European Journal of Criminology, 2(1): 5-37.

LO 15-7

A minority of adolescents are part of street-oriented groups in which illegal behaviour is common, groups that can be referred to as ‘youth gangs’ or ‘troublesome youth groups’. Such groups are a well-known phenomenon in the United States and recently have been reported in a number of European nations. Relatively few researchers, however, have endeavoured to explore such youth gangs from a comparative perspective. In this article, we examine characteristics of American and Dutch gangs and gang members. These cross-national comparisons are based on two school samples of 11-16-year-old youths in the USA (N = 5935) and the Netherlands (N = 1978). The students completed anonymous, self-administered questionnaires containing similar questions, which allow for comparison of Dutch and American adolescent experiences with youth gangs.