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Among the Hoods

Harriet Sergeant

The shocking true story of a teenage gang from South London, and how the state holds teenagers like them back.

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“They changed me a lot more than I changed them … I went in as Anne Widdecombe and came out an anarchist.”

In 2008 Harriet Sergeant – think tank report-writer, Daily Mail journalist and author of The Public and the Police – befriended a teenage gang in south London while doing research. What began as a conversation outside a chicken take-away shop became a three-year attempt to change their lives, taking her from job centres and the care system to prison and failing schools. Her experiences left her believing that the state has played an integral part in creating gang culture in Britain – and that the entire system must now change if we want to help these young men. Reading her story will challenge everything you thought you knew about society and politics today.