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Running the NumbersRace, Police, and the History of Urban Gambling$
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Matthew Vaz

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226690445

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226690582.001.0001

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Lottery as an American Way of Life

(p.153) Conclusion
Running the Numbers
Matthew Vaz
University of Chicago Press

This chapter charts the growth of state lotteries in America, as lottery play captures the public imagination. The emergence of multimillion dollar jackpot games transforms American gambling habits and turns lotteries into a ubiquitous form of American consumption. The contemporary gambling dynamic bears little relation to the original justification for lottery formation as a measure to curb police corruption. Meanwhile, a deeply corrupt multinational lottery services sector has emerged, with a priority of spreading ever more gambling. The chapter looks at this emergence in the context of Daniel Bell's 1953 essay, "Crime as an American Way of Life," which posited that gambling would one day become a legitimate American business.

Keywords:   lotteries, Gtech Corporation, Daniel Bell, taxation, corruption, consumption, American leisure

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