Guns in the U.S.: A Love Story (Gen Ed 1073)

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Why does America love guns?

 

Histories, Societies, Individuals icon with text

Caroline Light

The U.S. comprises 5% of the world’s population but holds approximately 40% of the world’s guns. We also experience more gun-related deaths than any economically comparable nation. How did the nation become a “gun culture,” and whose rights and interests does widespread armament serve? Who is included in the Second Amendment’s appeal to “the right of the people to have and bear arms,” and how have notions of race, gender, class, and sexuality framed popular understandings of “good guys” and “good women” whose armed citizenship is required for the nation’s security? We’ll read analyses from public health, history, literary/cultural studies, political science, and gender/ethnic studies to help unpack collective assumptions and historical blindspots about the purposes and effects of contemporary gun ownership.

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