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From the Publisher
"In his first book, fan and socio-anthropologist Snyder doesn’t just celebrate urban street art and its rising stars, but takes a thorough look at its history and future, the language of public art and the idea of the graffiti artist as criminal—including an intriguing challenge to the ‘broken windows theory’ cited by law enforcement and NYC government officials as central to their efforts. Along the way he decodes a backdoor in the East Village covered with a dozen different tags—’in the same way that the sedimentary layers of ancient ruins inspire archaeologists to tell tales of past civilizations’—profiles rising and established stars, and takes a raw, detailed tour of the scene. . . . Snyder’s ‘the kids are alright’ assessment, buttressed by many examples of thrill-seeking taggers finding successful careers in art, design, publishing, and (commissioned) mural-painting, is well-articulated, convincing, and quite possibly reassuring for the urbanites living among (or perhaps raising) today's writers and bombers."
-Publisher’s Weekly Starred Review
"Outstanding, innovative, and multidimensional. . . . I can easily see this book becoming the new ‘best book on graffiti.’ "
-Joe Austin,author of Taking the Train: How Graffiti Art Became an Urban Crisis in New York City
"Graffiti lives! proclaims author Snyder in this new, vaguely academic account of graffiti in the urban underground—particularly New York."
-New York Post
“Graffiti writers, the book argues, cannot be understood merely as practitioners of vandalism and social disorder, but also as members of a diverse subculture who, in many cases, have used their experiences to build legitimate careers.”
-The New York Times
"Will prompt readers to look again at graffiti scrawls they may previously have ignored."