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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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(p.139) 7 Conclusion
Why Girls Fight

Cindy D. Ness

NYU Press

This book has investigated the confluence of social, cultural, and individual factors that account for the physical violence among girls in the low-income neighborhoods of Melrose Park and Lee in Philadelphia. It has shown that girls resort to street fighting for reasons that are far more complex than the stereotypes and generalities that have often been put forward to explain their aggressive behavior imply. It has provided evidence that youth violence in low-income neighborhoods, whether carried out by males or females, is in large part a reaction to a sense of actual and perceived threat, as well as a compensatory attempt to increase a sense of security in both concrete and psychological terms. This concluding chapter offers some suggestions to truly understand the dynamics of girls' violence patterns in inner cities and what it means when girls fight.

Keywords:   physical violence, girls, low-income neighborhoods, street fighting, aggressive behavior, girls' violence, youth violence, Melrose Park, Lee

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