Monster: The Autobiography of an L.A. Gang Member

Monster: The Autobiography of an L.A. Gang Member

Sanyika Shakur

Language: English

Pages: 400

ISBN: 0802141447

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Written in solitary confinement, Kody Scott’s memoir of sixteen years as a gangbanger in Los Angeles was a searing best-seller and became a classic, published in ten languages, with more than 300,000 copies in print in the United States alone. After pumping eight blasts from a sawed-off shotgun at a group of rival gang members, twelve-year-old Kody Scott was initiated into the L.A. gang the Crips. He quickly matured into one of the most formidable Crip combat soldiers, earning the name “Monster” for committing acts of brutality and violence that repulsed even his fellow gang members. When the inevitable jail term confined him to a maximum-security cell, a complete political and personal transformation followed: from Monster to Sanyika Shakur, black nationalist, member of the New Afrikan Independence Movement, and crusader against the causes of gangsterism. In a document that has been compared to The Autobiography of Malcolm X and Eldridge Cleaver’s Soul on Ice, Shakur makes palpable the despair and decay of America’s inner cities and gives eloquent voice to one aspect of the black ghetto experience today.

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five usually make raids into neighboring territories for preemptive strikes or retaliatory hits on enemies and targets useful to the opposition. Although both armies are predominantly made up of males, there are many females involved in the fighting. These infrastructures were built initially on robberies and extortions. Today, however, they are maintained by proceeds from major narcotics deals and distribution throughout America. Each army has a distinct territory—the boundaries of some very

actually carried out by no more than four dedicated soldiers: Crazy De, Legs Diamond, Tray Stone, and myself. What started out as a tactic began to produce serious strategic results. Just as we had anticipated, confusion as to who was who set in over in the Sixties ’hood, and we were able to make some stunning strikes in the midst of their indecisiveness. In the meantime, our idea was gaining momentum in our ’hood. Others began to campaign for their respective sides, though all in unity with the

employees, it was also utilized as an overflow lot for customers. It was in this second, dark parking lot that Pam parked. “Why you parking back here?” I protested, my security alarm going off. “Look, Monster, this is my mother’s car and I can park anywhere I want,” Pam said in an almost hostile voice. I decided to hold my tongue at this point because had I responded with what I was thinking there would have been an explosion in the car. My main objective was to survey the surplus for weak and

in a body bag. I would gladly die in a couple of months, but not now, not here. We rode in silence the rest of the way. Then it dawned on me: the banger was probably unmoved by my disclaimer of affiliation and was going to ride the duration of the bus route to see where I got off. Then he’d know I was an Eight Tray and gun me down. Damn, I thought, while in the juvenile tank I’d had Termite, a Chicano from East Side Clover, write ETG on the back of my neck. For sure when I got off the bus he’d

with everyone from both sides participating. “EAST SIDE!” Baker and Denver row would chant, repeating it three times and finishing with a set roll call. “East Coasts, Avalon, Main Streets, Grape Street, Eight-Seven, PJ Watts, Fo’ Tray, Five Tray . . .” And in response the West Side would chant, “west side! Hoova, Eight Tray, Sixties, Shot Gun, Raymond, Playboy, West Boulevard . . .” The threat of the East Side became real. So real, in fact, that East and West Side sets that had never clashed

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