Marc Lamont Hill

Marc Lamont headshot

Research Interests

  • Carcerality
  • Abolitionism
  • Racialization
  • State Violence
  • Settler-Colonialism
  • Public and Counter-Public Pedagogies
  • Transnational Political Solidarities
  • African Diaspora
  • Middle East
  • Palestine


  • Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania


Affiliated Campus(es)

  • CUNY Graduate Center

Marc Lamont Hill is a cultural anthropologist, critical policy scholar, and radical educator whose work explores issues of race, education, citizenship, and state violence in the United States and Middle East.

For two decades, Hill has conducted ethnographic research inside and outside of formal educational contexts. His first study, Beats Rhymes and Classroom Life: Hip-Hop Pedagogy and the Politics of identity is considered a foundational text in Hip-Hop Studies and educational anthropology. Hill’s subsequent educational scholarship has been situated within informal and everyday educational spaces, spotlighting how Black communities transmit “unofficial” intellectual traditions, nurture individual and collective identities, and develop oppositional politics. In particular, his ethnographic work has unpacked the complex and sometimes contradictory ways that Black bookstores, alternative religious spaces, and “conscious” online digital platforms operate as sites of political education, critical pedagogy, and counter-public literacy.

The second strand of Hill’s ethnographic research is situated in the geographic and political Middle East, where he has studied the experiences of Afro-descendant communities. He has conducted fieldwork in East Jerusalem’s Old City, exploring racialization, citizenship, and antiblackness among the Afro-Palestinian community. Hill has also done qualitative research with East African asylum seekers in Israel, as well as the Beta Israel, Afro-Bedouin, and African Hebrew Israelite of Jerusalem communities. This research has also provided the foundation for Black In The Holy Land, an ethnographic film that unpacks the racial complexities of Israel and Palestine through the experiences of Afro-descendant populations.

In addition to his ethnographic work, Hill’s uses critical policy analysis to examine the role of U.S. social policy in the expansion and fortification of the American carceral state. Building on the work of anti-carceral and abolitionist scholars, his scholarship examines how neo-liberal economic and criminal justice policy, combined with the lingering material impacts of the “afterlife of slavery,” have led to the economic deprivation, mass criminalization and incarceration of Black citizens within the United States. This scholarship has resulted in several books, including: Nobody: America’s War on the Vulnerable from Ferguson to Flint and Beyond; We Still Here: Pandemics, Policing, Protest, and Possibility; Gentrifier; and Seen and Unseen: Technology, Social Media, and the Fight for Racial Justice. Hill also uses critical policy analysis to explore U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, particularly Israel and Palestine. This work includes Except For Palestine: The Limits of Progressive Politics, winner of the 2021 Palestine Book Award.

His forthcoming text, Schooling Against The Prison, shows how U.S. educational policy and practice has contribution to the expansion and fortification of the American carceral state.

Forthcoming Books

  • Hill, M.L., Schooling Against the Prison: Abolitionist Education in the Age of Incarceration. Cambridge: Harvard Education Press.

Recent Articles & Chapters

  • Hill, M.L. (in press). "Pedagogies of Abolition in Urban Appalachia." In J. Z. Bennett, C. L. McGuire, L. Delale-O’Connor, T. E. Dancy II, & S. E. Vaught" (Eds.), Elegies, futurities, and now: Anti-carceral freedom struggles in urban Appalachia. University Press of Kentucky.
  • Hill, M.L. (2023). "How Hip-Hop Means: Retrospect for Beats, Rhymes, and Classroom Life." In S. Alim and J. Chang (eds.). Freedom Moves: Hip Hop Knowledges, Pedagogy, and Futures. Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Hill, M.L. (2023). "Edmund Gordon as Black Organic Intellectual: In E. Dixon, D.W. Rice, H. Madhubuti, & Carol Lee" (S. Madhubuti). Black Radical Love: A New Black Reconstruction Through the Thought & Activism of Edmund W. Gordon. Chicago: Third World Press.
  • Hill, M.L (2021). "Never Too Much." In T. Burke & B. Brown (eds.). You Are Your Best Thing: Vulnerability, Shame, Resilience, and the Black Experience. New York: Random House.
  • Erakat, N. & M.L. Hill (2019). “Black-Palestinian Transnational Solidarity: Renewals, Returns, and Practice.” Journal of Palestine Studies, 48(4), 7-16. [fully co-authored]
  • Hill, M.L. (2018). “From Ferguson to Palestine: Reimagining Transnational Solidarity Through Difference.” Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly (41)4, 942-957.
  • Hill, M. L. (2018). “‘Thank you, Black Twitter’: State Violence, Digital Counterpublics, and Pedagogies of Resistance.” Urban Education 53(2), 286-302.

Professional Affiliations

  • American Anthropological Association
  • American Educational Research Association
  • Middle East Studies Association


  • 2022 – Outstanding Service Award – Urban Education Journal
  • 2021 – Palestine Book Award – (Except For Palestine)
  • 2018 – Tow Fellow, Columbia University Journalism School
  • 2017 – Nautilus Book Award (Nobody)
  • 2016 – Kirkus Best Book of the Year (Nobody)
  • 2016 – New York Times Editor’s Choice (Nobody)
Marc Lamont headshot


Affiliated Campus(es)

  • CUNY Graduate Center

Published Books