Augsburg Fortress

Breaking Bread, Breaking Beats: Churches and Hip-Hop - A Basic Guide to Key Issues

Breaking Bread, Breaking Beats: Churches and Hip-Hop - A Basic Guide to Key Issues

What is hip-hop, and how does it impact the Black Church? How does the Black Church integrate hip-hop? How do black churches think about hip-hop? How do these different, yet deeply interrelated communities think about the key topics of modern life—be it gender, sex, race, or globalization?
These questions and more are the concern of the CERCL Writing Collective, under the mentorship of Anthony Pinn. In this innovative project, ten individuals write as one voice to illuminate the ways that hip-hop and the Black Church agree, disagree, and inform each other on key topics. 
This book grows out of the popular religion and hip-hop course, soon to be offered as an open enrollment online course, at Rice University by Anthony B. Pinn and Bernard 'Bun B' Freeman. Like the course, the book offers engaging insights into one of today’s most important musical genres and reflects on its broad cultural impact.
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  • Publisher Fortress Press
  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9780800699260
  • eBook ISBN 9781451489491
  • Dimensions 6 x 9
  • Pages 192
  • Publication Date October 1, 2014


Getting Started                                                                                                    
1. Moments in the History of Black Churches and Hip-Hop
2. Black Churches, Hip-Hop, and the Body
3. Black Churches, Hip-Hop, Race, and Ethnicity                       
4. Black Churches, Hip-Hop, and Poverty    
5. Black Churches, Hip-Hop, and Gender                                   
6. Black Churches, Hip-Hop, and Sexuality                              
7. Black Churches, Hip-Hop, and Ethics                       
8. Black Churches, Hip-Hop, and Globalization
9. A Relationship between Black Churches and Hip-Hop?
10. The Cipher                                                                                      
The CERCL Writing Collective Members                                      
Selected Bibliography                                                                                        


"With intellectual rigor as beautifully detailed as Baroque counterpoint and the creative impulses of improvisational jazz, Breaking Bread, Breaking Beats, via interdisciplinary, dialogical, and communal analysis wedding town (faith and social communities and professional hip hop artists) and gown (the academy),  explores the intersections, juxtapositions, and reciprocal critique of the Black church and Hip Hop. The Center for Engaged Research and Collaborative Learning (CERCL) Writing Collective wax eloquently and cogently as they explore socio-cultural contextual issues from historical, economic, and political matters to embodiment, gender, race, dress, sexuality, identity, oppression, resistance, globalization, ethics, and cipher. The authors brilliantly tell the story of the nonmonolithic Black church and the diverse realities of hip-hop from the late twentieth century to the present. Breaking Bread, Breaking Beats is a must read for those interested in social history, black church, and Hip Hop."
—Cheryl A. Kirk-Duggan
Shaw University Divinity School

"This collaborative volume is an intergenerational breath of fresh air. In addition to 'breaking bread' and 'breaking beats,' it breaks the hostility and miscommunication between the traditional Black Church(es) and the hip-hop movement by opening a door for constructive dialogue, internal critique, and a mutually beneficial future. This prophetic and persuasive call for a truce between two seemingly incompatible phenomena makes this innovative book a must-read for anyone, young or old, who is seriously concerned about bridging the generational divide and who dares to discern positive possibilities where some only see negative contradictions."
—Dennis W. Wiley, Pastor
Covenant Baptist United Church of Christ, Washington, DC

"This is just the text I have been looking for! Pinn presents the results of an innovative teaching and learning experience to bring together the two guardians of revolutionary spirituality in the African American community: the Black Church and hip-hop. Too often these movements have been caricatured and thus prevented from engaging in the kind of conversation that can lead our people forward. This critical and constructive guide will be indispensable for anyone doing theology and ministry among African Americans today."
—James H. Evans Jr.
Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School

"Breaking Bread, Breaking Beats provides us access to incredible intellectual insights emerging from the intersection of Hip-Hop and black religion. Like the gospel-blues of the previous century, these tightly bound cultural forces have much to teach one another about gender, sexuality, and commodification. This powerful book invites both the novice and the 'hip-hop Head' into the conversation."
—Jonathan L. Walton
Harvard Divinity School


Review in CHOICE