In today’s culture, popular music is a vital site where ideas about gender and sexuality are imagined and disseminated. Popular Music and the Politics of Hope: Queer and Feminist Interventions explores what that means with a wide-ranging collection of chapters that consider the many ways in which contemporary pop music performances of gender and sexuality are politically engaged and even radical. With analyses rooted in feminist and queer thought, contributors explore music from different genres and locations, including Beyoncé’s Lemonade, A Tribe Called Red’s We Are the Halluci Nation, and celebrations of Vera Lynn’s 100th Birthday.

At a bleak moment in global politics, this collection focuses on the concept of critical hope: the chapters consider making and consuming popular music as activities that encourage individuals to imagine and work toward a better, more just world. Addressing race, class, aging, disability, and colonialism along with gender and sexuality, the authors articulate the diverse ways popular music can contribute to the collective political projects of queerness and feminism. With voices from senior and emerging scholars, this volume offers a snapshot of today’s queer and feminist scholarship on popular music that is an essential read for students and scholars of music and cultural studies.

chapter |18 pages


ByCraig Jennex, Susan Fast

part I|2 pages

Displacing Whiteness

chapter |10 pages


Displacing Whiteness
ByDaphne A. Brooks

chapter 1|18 pages

Visions of Wondaland

On Janelle Monáe’s Afrofuturistic Vision
ByMarquita R. Smith

chapter 2|14 pages

Listening to Difference

Recognition and Refusal in Queer Music Diasporas
ByCraig Jennex

chapter 3|14 pages

Who’s Your Daddy?

Beyoncé, the Dixie Chicks, and the Art of Outlaw Protest
ByFrancesca T. Royster

part II|2 pages

Rethinking Difference

chapter |6 pages


Rethinking Difference
ByAnnie Janeiro Randall

chapter 4|20 pages

“Brave New Ideas Begin”

Disability, Gender, and Life Writing in Twenty-First-Century Pop
ByLaurie Stras

chapter 5|18 pages

“Round My Hometown”

Listening to London in the Racial Politics of Post-Millennial British Soul
ByFreya Jarman, Emily Baker

chapter 6|20 pages

Born to Run and Reckless: My Life as a Pretender

Rewriting the Political Imaginary of Rock Music Memoir
ByPamela Fox

part III|2 pages

Decolonizing Sound

chapter |6 pages


Decolonizing Sound
ByEllie M. Hisama

chapter 7|22 pages

Sounding the Halluci Nation

Decolonizing Race, Masculinity, and Global Solidarities with A Tribe Called Red
ByAlexa Woloshyn

chapter 8|14 pages

Addict(ive) Sex

Toward an Intersectional Approach to Truth Hurts’ “Addictive” and Afro-South Asian Hip Hop and R&B
ByElliott H. Powell

chapter 9|20 pages

Hip Hop Dialogues

Sampling Women’s Hand Drum Songs and the Canadian Popular Mainstream
ByLiz Przybylski

part IV|2 pages

Refusing Conventions

chapter |8 pages


Refusing Conventions
ByMaureen Mahon

chapter 10|14 pages

Electro-Pop as Trojan Horse

Hearing the Call to Arms in Anohni’s HOPELESSNESS
ByMaria Murphy

chapter 11|16 pages

Genders, Genres, Generations

Jacqueline Warwick and Susan McClary in Conversation
BySusan McClary, Jacqueline Warwick

chapter 12|12 pages

Power in the Darkness and “Angry Atthis”

Anthems, Genres and the Queer Voice
ByJack Halberstam

part V|2 pages

Voicing Resilience

chapter |6 pages


Voicing Resilience
ByMurray Forman

chapter 13|16 pages

Resisting the Politics of Aging

Madonna and the Value of Female Labor in Popular Music
ByTiffany Naiman

chapter 14|16 pages

Vera Lynn 100

Retirement, Aging, and Legacy for a “National Treasure”
ByChristina Baade

chapter 15|18 pages

Sounding Lockdown

Singing in Administrative Segregation at the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women
ByBenjamin J. Harbert, Consuela Gaines