Video encyclopedia

Sicilian Mafia


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The Sicilian Mafia, also known as simply the Mafia and frequently referred to by members as Cosa Nostra, is a Mafia-terrorist-type organized crime syndicate based in Sicily, Italy. It is a loose association of criminal groups that share a common organisational structure and code of conduct. The basic group is known as a "family", "clan", or "cosca". Each family claims sovereignty over a territory, usually a town or village or a neighbourhood (borgata) of a larger city, in which it operates its rackets. Its members call themselves "men of honour", although the public often refers to them as "mafiosi". The Mafia's core activities are protection racketeering, the arbitration of disputes between criminals, and the organizing and oversight of illegal agreements and transactions.
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  • Etymology 

  • Definitions 

  • History 

  • Structure and composition 

  • Rituals and codes of conduct 

  • Protection rackets 

  • Other activities 

  • Violence and reputation 

  • Notable Sicilian mafiosi