Alien Conspiracy Theory for Sicilian Mafia in Us

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Critically analyse the social construction of the ‘ethnic conspiracy’ theory by using the case study of an international criminal network. How and why has this theory prevented a fuller understanding of the problem of organised crime?
Case study- Sicilian Mafia
‘Organized crime can simply mean systematic and illegal activity for power or profit. Today, however, the term is usually used in a second sense, and has become virtually synonymous with gangsters in general or the 'Mafia' or mafia-type organisations, in particular.’ (Woodwiss 2000:1)
The term ‘Mafia’ often refers to an organised criminal syndicate or association that originally developed in Sicily during the nineteenth century at the end of feudalism when institutional reforms caused the diffusion of private properties without matching state enforcement. This analysis builds on the work of Gambetta (1993) who argues that the Sicilian Mafia originally sold landowners protection from attacks when State enforcement was unavailable and in such circumstances Mafia were used as a supplement for state failure. These protectors were so successful in their role that they resort to extorting money, by making crime and forcing the wealthy to buy their protection services. As a result they became an international organised criminal network, yet while it may be that the Mafia are viewed as an organized criminal syndicate, their very provision of protection can be seen as a legitimate business service and not organised crime. It is also the case that legitimate businesses co-exist with illegal ones, so it is not always simple to characterise the Mafia as organised crime.
Additionally, the term Mafia alone has been used interchangeably with other criminal organisations so when it is being discussed, there is confusion about whether discussion is of the Sicilian Mafia or organised crime in general.
In the late…...

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