El Cero

short stories

Them

“They are not ‘exotic others’ operating in an irrational netherworld. On the contrary they are ‘made in America.'”

Philippe Bourgois (In Search of Respect)

The quote comes from Bourgois’ 3-year anthropological investigation into the lives of a small group of crack dealers in New York’s East Harlem. Considering the structural context of their lives, while relating this to the individual actions and histories of the protagonists.

By altering the place name, the quote could easily relate to so many different individuals, in so many locations. Why is it generally seen to be better to make people into monsters than admit or deal with the structural background of their reality?

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