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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 157057 Find in a Library
Title: Crimes of Style: Urban Graffiti and the Politics of Criminality
Author(s): J Ferrell
Date Published: 1993
Page Count: 248
Sponsoring Agency: Garland Publishing, Inc.
New York, NY 10003-3304
Publication Number: ISBN 0-8153-0810-8
Sale Source: Garland Publishing, Inc.
19 Union Square
West Floor 8
New York, NY 10003-3304
United States of America
Type: Issue Overview
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This book examines the intricate visual language, artistic symbolism, and distinct cultural heritage reflected in urban graffiti in Denver, Colorado, as well as themes of deviance and social reaction that graffiti depicts.
Abstract: Graffiti illuminates contemporary urban culture, and specific forms of graffiti incorporate different styles and meanings. Most urban graffiti in the United States has been shaped by cultural practices that have emerged out of black neighborhoods and street gang environments. In Denver and elsewhere in the United States, "tagger" or "writer" graffiti is also referred to as "hip hop" graffiti. Denver's hip hop graffiti underground includes beginning writers in their early teens and veterans in their thirties. The underground brings together writers from inner-city and suburban neighborhoods and from circumstances of deprivation and relative affluence. As individuals write hip hop graffiti, they participate in a cultural process rooted in young black culture. Denver's graffiti scene is interwoven with broader cultural processes, and government, police, and corporate responses have generally reflected hip hop graffiti as a social problem. Efforts to criminalize and suppress hip hop graffiti in Denver are considered, as well as cultural innovations reflected in urban graffiti and the politics of culture and crime. References, notes, and photographs
Main Term(s): Gangs
Index Term(s): Black/African Americans; Colorado; Criminology; Cultural influences; Deviance; Graffiti; Juveniles; Political influences; Social organization; Sociological analyses; Urban area studies; Urban criminality
Note: Current Issues in Criminal Justice
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