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Monster: The Autobiography of an L.A. Gang Member
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am 10. Mai 2004
In diesem Buch begleiten Sie "Monster Kody Scott" durch seine Gangsta Laufbahn bei der L.A. Gang Crips. Er hat dieses Buch im Gefängnis geschrieben und hat seine Lebenseinstellung geändert, doch er beschreibt seine Erlebnisse ungeschminkt und Gänsehauterregend.
Durch dieses Buch bekommt man einen Geschmack wie es in den Ghettos von den USA zugeht, in jedem Ghetto, jeden Tag...
"Kody Scott" beschreibt die Gang Signs (mit denen man seine Nachbarschaft representiert) und beschreibt wie Gangs aufgebaut sind und wie sie denken.
Ein schokierend reales, packend und fesselndes Buch. Ich habe noch nie zuvor etwas vergleichbares gelesen.
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am 31. Mai 2000
"Monster" exposed me a different side of life. I had been aware of newscasters and officials speaking out against the "gang problem", but until this book it had all seemed very far from my experience. Sanyika Shakur pulls you into a world of gangs and violence from the first page. Scenes from this book will stay with you and haunt you. Reading this is almost like living in another person's mind. I thought Shakur's comparisons of gang-life to being a soldier in a war were well thought out. There isn't much to say about this book, its sort of like the scene in the "Matrix" take this pill and you can never go back to the way things were...read "Monster" and you will never see gangs and the environment that spawns them in the same way.
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am 6. Dezember 1999
This book was assigned to me as a part of a history course at the University of Central Florida. The professor for the course, Dr. Curtis Austin, could not have angered me more by exposing the life of someone I viewed as a my own brother to the white people in the course. He was ridiculed, chastised, and deplored; to my surprise, a black man's life was sincerely understood. I've learned so much about our nation from this novel.
I did not speak in class during the sessions in which Shakur was discussed, a decision I've grown to regret. However, the novel itself speaks with an eloquence that I may never understand. My childhood was tough, but the life this human being had to live was dispicable. What nation, so dedicated to the principles America expouses, would allow a child to have to decide between killing and living-- to live for death or destruction.
Any American, or for that matter any human being with a conscious must read this novel. My life echoed the violence, drugs, and desparation of decadence. His world is mine own, and Shakur's world is yours; C-nation is the antithesis of American democracy.
We're talking about making the world safe for democracy, we better make L.A. safe for children first.
Please read this novel.
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am 3. Juli 2000
I have just finished Monster:The Autobiography of an L.A. gang member, and I would have to say that it is some of the best accounts of the Crips and gangsta life that I have read.I would like to stress that this book is not for those who have no idea about the struggle and are easily upset. Sanyika Shakur is a great writer and I am happy to see a black man from south central rise in education to such an amazing writer. I don't agree with a few things in this book such as use of the word overstand in place of understand, only because of the confusion it creates when you come across it, and it slows down the pace. It would also have helped if Shakur had explained why he use overstand so that the ready could comfortably read knowing where he was coming from.This is the real deal, and teen-agers and young adults are killing themselves and their communittees and the violence must stop. I salute Shakur for his difficult transition from Crip to New Afrikan nationalist. To the author should he read this-I don't agree with your mentality of "seperation of races" because my road dog, my best friend, my brother is black and yes I am white-Italian and if your philosphy to seperate was in effect then I would not be able to live and die by the gun with my homie. I love him as you love De.Peace brother you are a good man, and your past is nothing that you can change. Thank you for letting me see through your eyes before I have made the same mistake. I do Overstand.
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am 27. Juli 1997
Shakur gives us an inside look at the gang life, juvenile lock downs, Calif. prisons and that of a new-born revolutionary. Understand better how young men and women get involved in gangs and what they must endure on a daily basis. Several times I had to put the book down and gather the strength to continue to read. It was difficult to learn of the death and degree of destruction our children cause each other, as they struggle to live. This is not the story told by the media. Indeed these children weren't even considered, they were invisible. And for this reason alone, this book should be required reading for people who can make a difference - all of us! Read it, pass it on to a friend and decide how you're going to affect the life of a child. Gangsterism isn't relagated to a place, it's a state of mind
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am 25. April 2000
I have read this book a number of times and it still does not fail to capture me. I have never read a book that involves its reader from start to finish as this does. Sanyika Shakur takes us on the path of his life from the age of 11 in the most graphic detail. Being from England, nothing could prepare me for the way of life Kody Scott had to live, a life of violent crime and also of belonging. It was good to see Kody realise his faults and turn into a muslim but unfortunate to hear that he returned to jail on a parole violation.
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am 14. Juli 2000
This book will blow you away. The author's point of view will literally scare you. You think of the author as a stone-cold 30-yr old, and then remember halfway through the book that he is only sixteen. daily murder and violence were a part of his life since he was 11 years old. He does not condone his criminal acts, but explains from a gangster's point of view the reasons for his actions. I could not put this book down until I was finished.
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am 30. November 1998
I think that the most interesting novel that I've read would probaly be Monster by Sanyika Shakur A.K.A. Kody Scott. I think it's one of the most interesting novels that I've read because Kody A.K.A. Monster is looking for a way to adventure out into life, but he gets caught up in the wrong outlooks or beliefs of life. His family is now the L.A. Crips gang. He depends on them and tries to get the same family support and the same opions from the Crips as he would his family. He takes many lives of innocent victims that were at the wrong place at the wrong time. Kody is the youngest out of the Crips, so therefore he is also the most gullable and willing to do anything any of the Crips tell him to do. As a reader, I believe that he's doing this out odf attentional reasons. I think that Monster also can be related to the books "Jay's Journal" and "Go Ask Alice", because Jay and Alice are both looking for some type of backup when they need that extra hand or extra opinion that they don't get from their families. I also believe it's a family cause because they all don't deal with families throughout the books, they deal with themselves as individuals out in the world alone and struggling for someone, but they don't really like to admit that they need someone. Therefore they take it amungst themselves and seek for a relationship with someone or maybe even an illegal substance in replacement for that person. In the book "Monster", Kody makes several choices and decisions. One of them was to be so irresponsible and get a girl pregnant. Now he has to make the decision of his thug life or to care for his unborn child. Of course nothing can get in between the love of his gang banging, but that's a decision he made for himself that will later result in lots of unloved tears his child will be shedding. In the novel "Go Ask Alice", Alice makes a lot of decisions herself also. She decides rather or not she wants to end her life by abusing drugs and perscription drugs. She chooses to put her life on the line and become dependent of the drugs, now she's paying for it. She struggles for her life with every illegal drug she puts into her body. In "Jay's Journal", Jay resolves his problems by committing suicide and taking his own life. These novels are not all about a character that is bad and doing drugs and killing people, it's about decisions and choices. Everyone has to make choices at some point in their life it's just that some people choose the wrong choice and end up paying for it later on in life if they even have a life to live in. I guess it just goes to show that there is never a time where your decisions should be rushed. Always take your time because you never know, there could never be another tomorrow to fall upon.
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am 10. Juni 2000
Monster: The Autobiography Of An LA Gang Member is a hard hitting narrative that will engage readers of all ethnicities and social classes. This is a riveting account from one who's "been there", but hasn't quite learned his lesson. Whether you love this book or hate it, Monster will stay with you long after you turn the last page.
Shakur's book breaks ground in answering the question: why do young people join gangs? During the early part of Shakur's acct. we see that he's a confused kid looking for guidance from someone older and wiser, someone who is an antidote to the sense of powerlessness with which he faces each day. Being in a gang gives Shakur a set of beliefs and values, no matter how skewed his moral universe becomes as a result.
I commend Shakur's mostly neutral tone. For his purposes and the book's subject matter, it's extremely effective. This is a book which could so easily devolve into histrionics and melodrama in less adept hands. At times, however, I found Shakur's neutrality disconcerting. At many points in the narrative when we most want him to show more of himself, he pulls back and hides behind his cloak of reserve. The reader has to infer much from what Shakur DOESN'T say. For example, Shakur's nonchalant description of his violent behavior does not necessarily translate into nonchalance about the violence itself. If we read between the lines of Shakur's account, we quickly see that he's more than a little repulsed by it. What made Shakur's narrative particularly engaging for me is that I kept waiting for him to crack a smile, make a joke, insert some levity and ease my discomfort, but he never does. What he's describing is deadly serious-literally--and Shakur refuses to sugarcoat his story and make it more palatable for us, his audience. His refusal to soften the glare which he uses to expose the truth of gang life make it impossible for us to turn our heads away from the ugliness. He forces us to look at the truth in the same unblinking way that he does, and his use of this technique packs one wallop of a punch.
My real issue with this book is that while Shakur goes a long way towards educating himself and rehabilitating himself, in one crucial way he doesn't go far enough. It's clear to us, the readers, that Shakur's dependence on a belief system that was provided by someone else got him in trouble, but Shakur doesn't make that connection himself. Unfortunately Shakur buys wholesale into another dubious and harmful mythology: that of Muhammad Abdullah, a black separtist who exhibits near-militant zeal in his conviction and encourages Shakur to substitute one "us -vs- them" mindset for another, ultimately dooming him to repeat the same mistakes that got him into so much trouble in the first place. Perhaps if Shakur hadn't so willingly accepted Abdullah's doctrine of militant black self-sufficiency, laws and conventions be damned, then he wouldn't have ended up back in prison over taking a matter that CLEARLY should have been handled by the LAPD into his own hands. When Shakur's post-rehabilitation actions lead to his conviction for assault and grand theft auto, his credibility is undermined and the depth of his transformation seems a bit shallow. He's making the same dumb mistakes, only this time it's for a different cause. It would have been preferable to see Shakur shaken out of his complacency by Abdullah, doing his own thinking instead of readily accepting Abdullah's, and finding his own answers. Abdullah's inflammatory rhetoric just fed Shakur's already considerable anger and sense of victimization. Shakur establishes in the first paragraph of the Preface that he's far too smart to become ANYONE'S fool. The ending of Monster left me wondering how Shakur could have possibly become Abdullah's.
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am 8. Februar 2009
Meiner Meinung nach ein wirklich tolles Buch für alle, die sich für das Geschehen in South Central LA von ~1970 bis Anfang 90ger Jahre interessieren.
Besonders interessant wird das Leben von Sanyika Shakur dann, wenn man, so wie ich, gerne Westcoast-Rap aus genau dieser Zeit hört. Man fängt an, die Inhalte der Lieder wesentlich besser zu verstehen.
Mich hat das Buch vollkommen gefesselt, allerdings darf man während dem Lesen nie vergessen, dass es sich dabei um wahre Geschichten handelt, man driftet während dem Lesen gedanklich schnell ab und denkt nur noch an einen billigen Action-Film, da es tatsächlich permanent um rohe Gewalt und das Töten von jungen Menschen geht. (Genau deshalb würde ich das Buch nur Leuten empfehlen, die tatsächlich Interesse daran haben, sonst könnte man, so stell ich mir das vor, das Buch schnell mal mit den Worten "So ein Blödsinn!" wegwerfen!
Besonders hervorheben möchte ich das letzte Drittel vom Buch, wo Sanyika Shakur das Gang-Leben aufgibt und vorallem auch anfängt oder probiert zu verstehen, warum so gut wie jeder junge Mensch ein Leben voll Gewalt und Hass führt. Dieser Teil des Buches ist ein gelungener Abschluss zu den vorhergegangenen, zum Teil sehr erschreckenden Geschichten aus dem Leben von Sanyika Shakur.
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