Enjoy millions of ebooks, audiobooks, magazines, and more, with a free trial

Only $11.99/month after trial. Cancel anytime.

Bloodbath Nation
Bloodbath Nation
Bloodbath Nation
Ebook120 pages1 hour

Bloodbath Nation

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars



Read preview

About this ebook

An intimate and astonishing rumination on gun violence in America from one of our greatest living writers and “genuine American original” (The Boston Globe) Paul Auster

Paul Auster was a crack marksman as a kid, and like most American boys of his generation he grew up playing with toy six-shooters and mimicking the gun-slinging cowboys in B-Westerns. But he also knows how families can be wrecked by a single act of gun violence: His grandmother shot and killed his grandfather when his father was just six years old.

Now, at this time of intense national discord, no issue divides Americans more deeply than the debate about guns. There are currently more guns than people in the United States, and every day more than one hundred Americans are killed by guns and another two hundred are wounded. These numbers are so large, so catastrophic, so disproportionate to what goes on elsewhere, that one must ask why. Why is America so different—and why are we the most violent country in the Western world?

In this short, searing book, Auster traces centuries of America’s use and abuse of guns, through the colonial prehistory of the Republic, armed conflict against the native population, the forced enslavement of millions, and the mass shootings that dominate the current news cycle. He examines the embattled gun-control and anti-gun-control camps, frames gun violence as a public health issue, and investigates the details of one horrific incident– including the perpetrator’s unchecked purchase of the gun he used and the suffering of a bystander-turned-hero. 

Filled with haunting photographs by Spencer Ostrander that document the abandoned sites of more than thirty mass shootings, Bloodbath Nation is an unflinching work about guns in America that asks: What kind of society do we want to live in?

Editor's Note

Essential history…

Gun violence is a singularly American issue, costing over 40,000 citizens their lives each year. In this compelling work of nonfiction, Auster (“Sunset Park”) explores how U.S. gun culture developed — and why the nation has yet to make changes. Blending statistics, anecdotes, and analysis, he walks readers through essential history, including ratifying the Second Amendment, clashes with Native Americans, and modern-day mass shootings, even weaving in his own dark family history with guns.

PublisherGrove Press
Release dateJan 10, 2023
Bloodbath Nation
Read preview

Paul Auster

Paul Auster is the bestselling author of 4 3 2 1, Sunset Park, Invisible, The Book of Illusions, and The New York Trilogy, among many other works. In 2006 he was awarded the Prince of Asturias Prize for Literature. Among his other honors are the Prix Médicis Étranger for Leviathan, the Independent Spirit Award for the screenplay of Smoke, and the Premio Napoli for Sunset Park. In 2012, he was the first recipient of the NYC Literary Honors in the category of fiction. He has also been a finalist for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award (The Book of Illusions), the PEN/Faulkner Award (The Music of Chance), the Edgar Award (City of Glass), and the Man Booker Prize (4 3 2 1). He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. His work has been translated into more than forty languages. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Read more from Paul Auster

Related to Bloodbath Nation

Related ebooks

Related articles