First published in 1993, Crimes of Style investigates the politics of culture and crime through an in-depth case study of graffiti in Denver and the official response to it.
Focusing on the most prevalent form of graffiti writing in Denver, the book provides a detailed consideration of the social and cultural circumstances that surround its creation. It explores the national and international development and reception of hip hop graffiti that provided the context in which Denver’s hip hop graffiti emerged. It also examines the reaction of Denver’s corporate and political community, highlighting the establishment of campaigns to criminalise it and identifying both Denver’s graffiti scene and the response to it as interwoven with broader cultural processes. Most significantly, the book puts forward the circumstances surrounding the phenomenal growth of, and subsequent attempts to suppress, hip hop graffiti as indicative of injustice and inequality within the United States.
Table of Contents
1: Introduction; 2: Denver Graffiti and the Syndicate Scene; 3: Doing Graffiti; 4: The Clampdown: Graffiti as Crime; 5: Crimes of Style; References; Index