The Basketball Diaries

by Jim Carroll

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On an enlarged map of Manhattan, plot the approximate dates and locations for the major events in the book. Research the history of these areas and try to find other, highly publicized events that took place in these areas. Plot these dates and descriptions as well.

Watch the film adaptation of The Basketball Diaries and compare it to the book.

Find another region in the 1960s that experienced as much drug use, prostitution, and crime as New York. Write a two-page portrait of what life was like for individuals who grew up in this area during this time.

Research the current drug problem in the United States, and compare it to the drug problem in the 1960s. What methods of enforcement have been used in each time period to slow or stop the sale and use of drugs? What has been the economic impact of the drug problem in each era?

Choose a professional athlete, from any point in history, who has been caught using drugs. Write a biography about this person, including whether the athlete used drugs as a teenager and what happened to this person when he or she was caught.

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