This past summer I was asked to write the concluding chapter for a book on Understanding American Gun Culture. The book was the product of a conference I wanted but was unable to attend and so I was happy to get involved after the fact. The book’s editors asked me to ponder the question, what’s next? It gave me an opportunity to reflect on my observation of and participation in American gun culture these past 6 plus years.
I submitted the manuscript at the end of August so I was surprised when I received the page proofs for my chapter last week. The turnaround time for academic books is usually counted in months (or years), not weeks. Clearly we have a motivated publisher here (Lexington Books, a division of the commercial academic publisher Rowman & Littlefield).
I don’t think it was an accident that the proofs were pushed out so quickly in the wake of the Las Vegas massacre. The topic of the book is timely. And what I say in this chapter about understanding and misunderstanding gun culture is similar, I think, to what I said in my NPR interview last week.
I am sharing the uncorrected page proofs here (as a PDF document) for anyone interested on my take. Get them while you can because once the book is published I will take them down.