New Book Published – Beats Not Beatings: The Rise of Hip Hop Criminology edited by Anthony J. Nocella II

Beats Not Beatings: The Rise of Hip Hop Criminology is a powerful radical intersectional scholarly-activist collection of liberation-based articles by “Mic” Crenshaw, Chandra Ward, Maurece Graham, Daniel White Hodge, Anthony J. Nocella II, Antonio Quintana, Andrea N. Hunt, Tammy D. Rhodes, Kenneth Culton, Andre Douglas Pond Cummings, Victor Mendoza, Adam de Paor-Evans, Lenard G. Gomes, Elloit Cardozo, and Tasha Iglesias that center marginalized and oppressed stories and experiences. This book emerged out of the Black Lives Matter and prison abolition movements. This collection challenges state violence as well as racist and classiest laws such as the school to prison pipeline, redlining, three strikes, mandatory minimums, truancy, felons cannot vote, check the box, and curfew. This thought-provoking insightful text demands that those affected by the criminal justice system should be leading the conversation on how it is broken, managed, and needs to be transformed. Critical theorist Anthony J. Nocella II, an innovative intersectional public intellectual, pushes educators and society to make connections and think outside the box on how Hip Hop has always had the answers on how to dismantle racism and classism by the U.S. criminal justice system. This book explains how Hip Hop brilliantly since day one has the answer to ending violence and crime in society, it is time to listen, get in where you fit in, or get out of the way.

It is refreshing, exciting and affirming to know that a collection of people have made the conscious decision to document hip-hop’s resistance to the carceral state. A definite must-read for those interested in the relationship between carcerality and self-determination.

—Dr. David Stovall, University of Illinois at Chicago

An invigorating and thoughtful exploration, taking the reader to terrains not often visited from perspectives rarely heard. The biographies of the authors in this collection read like a wish-list of dinner companions one could only dream of.

—Dr. Michael Coyle, Professor, Department of Political Science and Criminal Justice, California State University, Chico

A brilliant and compelling book that highlights the empowering and revolutionary nature of Hip Hop, a powerful medium that also highlights the corrupt and malicious criminal justice systems that serve the interests of the powerful. These essays make a profound contribution to the growing grass-roots movement calling for an inclusive, egalitarian, and sustainable future for everyone on the planet.

—Dr. David Nibert, Professor of Sociology, Wittenberg University

This book is a profoundly powerful radical book demanding total liberation. Beats Not Beatings: The Rise of Hip Hop Criminology is a must read book for anyone wanting racial justice and Black liberation.

—Tony Quintana, Editor, Transformative Justice Journal

“Mic” Crenshaw

“Mic” Crenshaw


Chandra Ward



Introduction: Hip Hop History, Criminalization, and Justice

Maurece Graham, Daniel White Hodge, Anthony J. Nocella II, and Antonio Quintana

Chapter One
‘No Homo’: Hip-Hop, Homophobia, and Queer Justice

Andrea N. Hunt and Tammy D. Rhodes

Chapter Two
Next-Level Postmodernism and the Presentation of Realness in Hip-Hop

Kenneth Culton

Chapter Three
Thug Life: Hip-Hop’s Curious Relationship with Criminal Justice
Andre Douglas Pond Cummings

Chapter Four
Música y Libertad

Victor Mendoza

Chapter Five
Stop and Search: Representations of Police Harassment in British Hip-Hop during the 1980s
Adam de Paor-Evans

Chapter Six

How (Un)cultured is Hip Hop?: The Moral & Legal Persecution of Rap in India

Lenard G. Gomes and Elloit Cardozo

Tasha Iglesias



Contributors’ Biographies