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Gangland Chicago: Criminality and Lawlessness in the Windy City (Hardback)
  • Gangland Chicago: Criminality and Lawlessness in the Windy City (Hardback)
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Gangland Chicago: Criminality and Lawlessness in the Windy City (Hardback)

(author)
£24.95
Hardback 404 Pages / Published: 15/10/2015
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This engrossing tale of gangs and organized criminality begins in the frontier saloons situated in the marshy flats of Chicago, the future world class city of Mid-continent. Gangland Chicago recounts the era of parlor gambling, commercialized vice districts continuing through the bloody Prohibition bootlegging wars; failed reform movements; the rise of post-World War II juvenile criminal gangs and the saga of the Blackstone Rangers in a chaotic, racially divided city. , Gang violence and street crime is endemic in contemporary Chicago. There is much more to the saga of crime, politics, and armed violence than Al Capone and John Dillinger. Gangland Chicago explores the changing patterns of criminal behavior, politics, gangs, youth crime and the failures of reform in its historic totality. Richard Lindberg takes the reader on a journey through decades of a troubled past to delve deep into the evolution of street gangs and organized violence endemic in Chicago. Small ethnic gangs organized in ethnic slum districts of the city expanded into the well-known organized crime syndicates of Chicago's history. Gangland Chicago is full of stories of unchecked violence, lawlessness, and mayhem. Unlike other standard true crime accounts focused exclusively on the Prohibition era, this historical look-back probes the obscure and forgotten dark corners of city crime history. Lindberg details how both "organized" and "dis-organized" street gangs have paralyzed city neighborhoods and transformed the crimes of the Windy City from street thuggery and common ruffians protected and nurtured by politicians into a protected class is gripping. Gangland Chicago is a revealing look at the Chicago underworld of yesterday and today. This comprehensive volume is sure to entertain and inform any reader interested in the evolution of organized crime and gangs in America's most representative city of the American Heartland.

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 9781442231955
Number of pages: 404
Weight: 748 g
Dimensions: 236 x 161 x 33 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
This expansive chronicle of criminal violence in Chicago traces the roots of today's gang violence back to the late 19th century, when parlor gambling and brothels laid a foundation of lawlessness among transients, railroaders, and military men that eventually attracted renowned gangsters like Al Capone to the Windy City. Just as critical to the evolution of gangland Chicago, Lindberg asserts, were the lesser-known but equally dangerous Chinese 'tong' gangs, the race riots of 1919, and the trafficking of young women. By the second half of the 20th century, the number of children growing up with single parents began contributing significantly to Chicago's gang culture. Lindberg ends this colorful narrative in 1989, leaving open the potential for a sequel covering the 1990s and early decades of the 21st century. A lifelong Chicagoan and city historian, he revels in uncovering Chicago's underground. * Publishers Weekly *
Lindberg reminds us you can't understand Chicago without understanding its gangs. A fascinating, detailed, and indispensable history. -- John M. Hagedorn, Professor and Senior Research Fellow, University of Illinois; author of People & Folks, Gangs, Crime, and the Underclass in a Rustbelt City
A rich, kaleidoscopic journey through the organized and disorganized criminal history of the city that put crime on the map. Lindberg lays his formidable talents on the line to tell this blood-sodden epic, which is both riveting and heartbreaking. Gangland Chicago should take its rightful place at the top of all American History syllabi and reading lists. -- Jay Bonansinga, New York Times bestselling author of The Sinking of the Eastland, Lucid, and The Walking Dead: Invasion
Crime in the city of Chicago has long held the attention of both scholars and the reading public. While a number of books have traced the history of the Capone Syndicate and its transformation into the Chicago Outfit, there is relatively little written about Chicago's many other criminal gangs. Lindberg's book fills this void. As a writer, I have always been impressed by the author's ability to study difficult to research topics. His skillful integration of newspaper reports and published sources has brought Lindberg's work to the attention of both the academic and nonacademic reader alike. The author's last book, The Gambler King of Clark Street: Michael C. McDonald and the Rise of Chicago's Democratic Machine is a noteworthy example. Those who study history know that you cannot comprehend today's social problems without understanding what came before. Gangland Chicago: Criminality and Lawlessness in the Windy City is a must read for anyone interested in understanding crime in Chicago. -- Robert M. Lombardo, PhD, author of Organized Crime in Chicago: Beyond the Mafia and The Black Hand: Terror by Letter in Chicago
Richard Lindberg is the reigning authority on Chicago bad guys. It didn't start with Capone, and Lindberg's got the goods on them all, from Roger Plant to the El Rukns. -- Sam Reaves, co-author of Mob Cop: My Life of Crime in the Chicago Police Department
Early on, Richard Lindberg quotes Lincoln Seffens' observation that Chicago is "First in violence, deepest in dirt, lawless, unlovely, ill-smelling, irreverent...the `tough' among cities, a spectacle for the nation," to which he adds, "It is that today." Lindberg provides what must be the most comprehensive overview of Windy City street gangs ever undertaken. With a historian's trained eye, he examines social conditions, the impact of economic, ethnic and racial segregation, the scourge of poverty, despair and failed reform movements dating back to the Civil War period and continuing into the New Millennium - all contributing factors to the rise of criminal street gangs in the South, West and North Sides of the city, and how some of these gangs morphed into organized crime factions known colloquially as the "Outfit," and the "gangster nations" of the modern day. He also brings to life the smorgasbord of rascals whose politics and policies still managed to yield a magnificent skyline and a citizenry who love the place, and he does so with a style of writing that resists a reader's efforts to even lay it down. -- William J. Helmer, author of The Complete Public Enemy Almanac
Everyone loves Chicago history, especially Chicago history involving crime and gangsters. This wonderful book will be snapped up by enthusiasts and recruit others. Enjoy! -- Leigh Bienen, senior lecturer, Northwestern University School of Law; author Florence Kelley, Factory Inspector in 1890s Chicago, and The Children

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