Making sense of the transition from the detroit streets to drug treatment

Paul Draus, Juliette Roddy, Kanzoni Asabigi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


In this article we consider the process of adjustment from active street sex work to life in structured substance abuse treatment among Detroit-area women who participated in a semicoercive program administered through a drug court. We examine this transition in terms of changes in daily routines and social networks, drawing on extensive qualitative data to illuminate the ways in which women defined their own situations. Using concepts from Bourdieu and Latour as analytical aids, we analyze the role of daily routines, environments, and networks in producing the shifts in identity that those who embraced the goals of recovery demonstrated. We conclude with a discussion of how the restrictive environments and redundant situations experienced by women in treatment could be paradoxically embraced as a means to achieve expanded opportunity and enhanced individual responsibility because women effectively reassembled their social networks and identities to align with the goals of recovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)228-240
Number of pages13
JournalQualitative Health Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 23 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • addiction / substance use
  • behavior change
  • marginalized populations
  • research, interdisciplinary
  • sex workers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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