Placing the Clusters in Practice Contexts

in Language of the Gun

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print February 2006 | ISBN: 9780226316086
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226316079 | DOI:
Placing the Clusters in Practice Contexts

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This chapter explores how different clusters of primary meanings associated with guns and youths' gun carrying coalesce and fragment in different practice contexts. The the Catalina interviews of young males—at Catalina Mountain School in Tucson, Arizona—reveal a close association between the “action/protection” cluster and carrying, and suggest the importance of exploring the interaction between meaning and context. One such context is gun carrying itself. How do the meanings of guns cluster in relation to the youths' history of gun carrying? To determine carrying status, each youth was asked during the interviews to trace his history of gun possession and gun carrying. It was discovered that there were certain identifiable categories of gun carrying. Each youth was coded based on his history of gun carrying, using various categories. A correspondence analysis of the social meanings by the gun carrying category produces the correspondence map.

Keywords: primary meanings; gun carrying; Catalina interviews; young males; correspondence analysis; social meaning; correspondence map

Chapter.  6216 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Criminal Law

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