A Dream Denied (Hardcover)

Incarceration, Recidivism, and Young Minority Men in America

By Michaela Soyer

University of California Press, 9780520290440, 184pp.

Publication Date: July 12, 2016

Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (7/12/2016)

List Price: 85.00*
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Young minority men are often portrayed in popular media as victims of poverty and discrimination. A Dream Denied delves deeper, investigating the social and cultural implications of the “American dream” narrative for young minority men in the juvenile justice systems in Boston and Chicago. This book connects young male offenders’ cycles of desistance and recidivism with normative assumptions about success and failure in American society, exposing a tragic disconnect between structural reality and juvenile justice policy. This book challenges us to reconsider how American society relates to its most vulnerable members, how it responds to their personal failures, and how it promises them a better future.

About the Author

Michaela Soyer is Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at Hunter College. 

Praise For A Dream Denied: Incarceration, Recidivism, and Young Minority Men in America

"One of the most profound findings of Soyer’s book is how desperately these young people want to make a change in their lives... the connection of the American Dream mythology to institutions of change is a worthy contribution, and Soyer’s critical gaze as a result of having grown up in Germany is unique."

— Theoretical Criminology

"Necessary reading."

— Punishment and Society

"The intricately detailed descriptions of the teenagers and their raw narratives are effective at telling a somber story. Soyer does an excellent job at showing why so many juveniles recidivate. In doing so, she contributes to a highly needed but surprisingly sparse area of developmental research that focuses on how systems influence juvenile reoffending and reentry."

— Journal of Youth and Adolescence