Teen Gangs: A Global View

By Maureen P. Duffy; Scott Edward Gillig | Go to book overview

11

PUERTO RICO

Edil Torres Rivera and Loan T. Phan


INTRODUCTION

Puerto Rico is a small island in the Caribbean with a population of 3.8 million people living in an area smaller than Rhode Island (U.S. Census Bureau, 2002). For more than five hundred years, this island nation has endured colonial governments, first under Spain's monarchy and, in the last one hundred years, under the United States. A number of Puerto Rican historians are convinced that the gang problem in Puerto Rico is due to political ambiguity and a long history of human rights violations of inmates in the Puerto Rican prisons (Picó, 1998). The problem of gangs in Puerto Rico is not widespread, and a number of experts believe that it is not a big problem. This is supported by the fact that the only literature about gangs that can be found in Puerto Rican libraries is the product of newspapers and not academic literature (De Jesús Mangual, 2002; Serrano, 2002).


HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

Puerto Rico, as a United States territory, exhibits a similar diversity of cultural characteristics in its society to that which exists in the United States. However, Puerto Rico is a colony of the United States and, as such, experiences immense political ambiguity, which has impacted how Puerto Ricans define themselves legally and economically (Fitzpatrick, 1987; Quintero Rivera, González, Campos, and Flores, 1960; Rivera Ramos, 2001). Puerto Rico centers around the future status of the country: attaining U.S. state-

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Teen Gangs: A Global View
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Series Foreword vii
  • Preface ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction: A Global Overview of the Issues of and Responses to Teen Gangs 1
  • 1 - Australia 13
  • 2 - The Bahamas 27
  • 3 - Great Britain 39
  • 4 - Honduras 59
  • 5 - Ireland 77
  • 6 - Israel 91
  • 7 - Italy 105
  • 8 - Jamaica 121
  • 9 - Malaysia 137
  • 10 - Papua New Guinea 149
  • 11 - Puerto Rico 167
  • 12 - Taiwan 179
  • 13 - Trinidad and Tobago 195
  • 14 - The United States 215
  • Index 225
  • About the Editors and Contributors 229
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