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The Sopranos

Americans at times seem to be consumed by crime, showing at one and the same time a fear of crime and a fascination with it. Crime is a topic in the daily newspaper, often crowding other news off the front pages. Crime and fear of crime are important subjects in political campaigns. Crime is a staple on entertainment programs on television and in books and movies which detail both real and fictional crimes from a wide variety of points of view. Organized crime is only one aspect of the crime problem in America. In the past, organized crime was a more potent and feared force, especially in the cities of the Northeast, but then and now organized crime has an effect on society in terms of added costs to goods and services, increased costs for law enforcement, and an effect on the administration of justice and on the degree to which Americans place their trust in their law enforcement and judicial systems. Organized crime has also served as a sort of reverse royalty in American society and has been immortalized in books and films through most of this century. Each of the immigrant groups that came to America brought with them a negative element in the from of criminal gangs that would prey on other immigrants and then on American society as a whole. The Italian segment of organized crime, variously known as the Mafia or La Cosa Nostra, prevailed for decades but has fallen on hard times because of a changed environment and improved law enforcement. Media depictions have fueled interest in the subject.

The Sopranos is a cable program now in its second season on Home Box Office (HBO), and like all good drama, it can be seen as both educational and entertaining at one and the same time. The educational aspect refers not just to the way it depicts the home and professional lives of current-day gangsters but in the way it analyzes American life in general, issues faced in our society today, and deeper aspects of human behavior and hu...

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The Sopranos. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 21:18, June 26, 2019, from