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About the Book

B-boying is a form of Afro-diasporic competitive dance that developed in the Bronx, NY in the early 1970s. Widely - though incorrectly - known as “breakdancing,” it is often dismissed as a form of urban acrobatics set to music. In reality, however, b-boying is a deeply traditional and profoundly expressive art form that has been passed down from teacher to student for almost four decades. Foundation: B-boys, B-girls and Hip-Hop Culture in New York offers the first serious study of b-boying as both unique dance form and a manifestation of the most fundamental principles of hip-hop culture.

Drawing on anthropological and historical research, interviews and personal experience as a student of the dance, Joseph Schloss presents a nuanced picture of b-boying and its social context. From the dance's distinctive musical repertoire and traditional educational approaches to its complex stylistic principles and secret battle strategies, Foundation illuminates a previously unexamined thread in the complex tapestry that is contemporary hip-hop.

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A powerful new approach to the study of hip-hop culture, dance theory, and popular culture