From the floor of American gun shows, a fascinating historical exposé of how guns have burrowed into the heart of American democracy.
"To understand gun talk, I had to understand what America means to millions of ordinary people and how these beliefs shaped their sense of who they are, were, and must remain in the future."—from the introduction to Gun Show Nation
In this first-of-its-kind archaeology of America's gun culture, progressive cultural historian, critic, and gun owner Joan Burbick takes us on a journey from gun shows to NRA conventions, using firsthand observations and interviews with a wide range of gun owners and gun advocates as a jumping-off point for a fascinating exploration of the rise of the gun—from Buffalo Bill and the mythology of the frontier to Ronald Reagan, the first sitting president to address the NRA.
Gun Show Nation examines the lethal politics of gun ownership, uncovering a powerful, conservative political ideology that places the individual citizen armed with a gun at the bulwark of our democracy.
Talking directly to gun lobby strategists, Burbick reveals the pro-gun movement's deliberate effort to co-opt the language of rights from the civil rights movement to appeal to a disaffected white electorate, crafting a powerful conservative response to liberal efforts to achieve social, economic, and racial justice in the 1960s.
An illuminating examination of how guns have changed and challenged our beliefs in democracy, Gun Show Nation shows us what America looks like from the floor of a gun show.
About Joan Burbick
See more books from this Author
Published January 1, 2006
by The New Press.
Political & Social Sciences, Law & Philosophy.