Crack: Micromechanics of a Dysfunctional Illegal Market

  • Jean Daudelin
  • José Luiz Ratton


Recife’s crack market is intensely competitive, particularly at the retail level. The challenges involved in governing the market in that context are made worse by heavy police disruption of the trade. In addition, the high prevalence of compulsive and dependent use makes debt and petty crime common among poor users. The tensions and conflict that result often turn violent as assaults and homicides among “traffickers” are rarely punished by authorities. Policing complicates the tricky governance of the crack market and fails to deter the violence that results from its breakdown. Unsurprisingly, much of Recife’s drug violence is tied to the crack trade.


Drug markets Crack Violence Police Inequality Brazil 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jean Daudelin
    • 1
  • José Luiz Ratton
    • 2
  1. 1.Carleton UniversityOttawaCanada
  2. 2.Federal University of PernambucoRecifeBrazil

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