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Biography and turning points in Europe and America$
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Karla B. Hackstaff and Feiwel Kupferberg

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781847428608

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847428608.001.0001

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Decisive turning points in life trajectories of violence among young men in the barrios of Caracas: the initiation and biographical reconversion to non-violent lifestyles

Decisive turning points in life trajectories of violence among young men in the barrios of Caracas: the initiation and biographical reconversion to non-violent lifestyles

Chapter:
(p.143) Six Decisive turning points in life trajectories of violence among young men in the barrios of Caracas: the initiation and biographical reconversion to non-violent lifestyles
Source:
Biography and turning points in Europe and America
Author(s):

Verónica Zubillaga

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781847428608.003.0007

Zubillaga analyzes young men’s movement into and out of violent lifestyles in the Venezuelan city of Caracas. She discusses the usefulness of the concept of “turning points” in the effort to understand, first, the biographical narratives of young men who initiated and sustained a trajectory of violence, and second, the narratives of biographical reconversion related by young men who developed a trajectory of violence, and who managed to re-define their identities, lifestyles, and life projects to repudiate violence. This paper is based on a series of life stories collected between 2000 and 2006 with a range of young people: nine 17 to 27 year olds in the Caracas barrios; fourteen 17 and 18 years detained youths in 2000; and with ten 22 to 30 year olds who had extricated themselves from violent lives. She finds that the emergence of projects with an existential sense, and the presence of other allies—social and familial—prove to be indispensable to confirm and sustain the modification.

Keywords:   Turning points, narratives, biography, family, social allies, youth violence, Venezuela

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