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Why Girls FightFemale Youth Violence in the Inner City$
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Cindy D. Ness

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780814758403

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814758403.001.0001

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Mothers, Daughters, and the Double-Generation Dynamic

Mothers, Daughters, and the Double-Generation Dynamic

(p.91) 5 Mothers, Daughters, and the Double-Generation Dynamic
Why Girls Fight

Cindy D. Ness

NYU Press

This chapter explores the role played by family and peers in the Melrose Park and Lee neighborhoods in socializing a girl to use violence and supporting her image as a fighter. More specifically, it considers the double-generation dynamic where mother and daughter fight side by side. It shows that there are mothers who had a history of fighting when they were younger, and that some even continue to engage in street fights. It shows that the girls' reliance on peers, female relatives, and even their mothers to come to their aid if outnumbered in a fight is an integral part of the anatomy of girls' violence. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the cultural and social dimensions of the mother-daughter alliance with regard to physical violence.

Keywords:   family, peers, mothers, street fights, girls, girls' violence, physical violence, Melrose Park neighborhood, Lee neighborhood

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