Enter the Babylon System Unpacking Gun Culture from Samuel

  • Hardcover
  • 368 pages
  • Enter the Babylon System Unpacking Gun Culture from Samuel Colt to 50 Cent
  • Rodrigo Bascunan
  • English
  • 22 March 2014
  • 9780679313885

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Enter the Babylon System Unpacking Gun Culture from Samuel Colt to 50 CentThis was a great read and worth picking up if your interested in gun culture in Canada A docu style investigation of our fascination with the gun from the perspective of the hip hop generationThe 2003 shooting death of Toronto community centre worker Kempton Howard put the spotlight on hip hop’s fixation with guns Media and police soon blamed rap music and its tales of gang life on bullet ridden US streets for the rising use of firearms in Canadian crime Were these songs artful accounts of a terrible truth or a self fulfilling prophecyRodrigo Bascunan and Christian Pearce have interviewed many of the major players in the hip hop world As publishers of an award winning magazine of urban culture they’d watched rap music become a scapegoat for society’s much older and widely spread fascination with guns What follows is their international adventure to deconstruct modern gun culture in all its manifestations Bascunan and Pearce seek out hip hop artists illegal gun runners firearms aficionados and manufacturers museum curators academics politicians video game creators activists victims of gun violence and the family and friends left behindSomewhere between Fast Food Nation No Logo and a Michael Moore documentary featuring sly sidebar material and original artwork Enter the Babylon System is part outrageous journalistic pursuit and part passionate cri de coeur for sanity in the face of a society’s obsession This wonderful Canadian book is so highly recommended It was written by the editors of Pound magazine which is in my opinion the best hip hop magazine out there The book explores gun culture as the subtitle states from its earliest inception all the way through to its current glorification in the media particularly in rap music It lays down the framework describing the issues and introducing the makes and models of guns and their histories Desert Eagle AK etc Then it takes you on a whirlwind tour of aficionados and detractors rappers enthusiasts woman's rights advocates everybody In the end you have a newfound respect for guns and gun culture but a simultaneous desire to become a pacifist It doesn't really resolve much I don't know whether I want to boycott guns or buy them But it sure crams a lot of information into just over 300 amazingly well written pages I couldn't put it down On a final note if you liked Bowling for Columbine check out this book This book is written by a couple of younger folks involved in the hip hop movement who look at the gun violence issue from the perspective of hip hop artists their experiences and how that is reflected in their music both promoting and challenging the gun violence in urban centers While largely a book for hip hop insiders which I am not it does provide insight into the persepctive of those who live and work most closely to the street where much gun violence occurs The only thing I wished was that the book was a little better referenced citations footnotes etc because it alluded to a great deal of good research information that was hard to follow up on I found this to be a very interesting read on how hip hop culture accessibility to guns poverty and street gangs are all strongly related to one another In the end it's all a very vicious circle; youths from broken homes integrate street gangs then a few become successful rappers claiming to represent their neighborhoods celebrating the same violent culture they came from and thus becoming inappropriate role models Great book by some Canadian authors about global gun culture Runs the full gamut from contemporary rap critiues to global capitalism to America's NRA Well written in documentary style I had this on the shelf for years and was glad that I finally breezed through it This book helped me consolidate my own feelings about the epidemic ofgun violence rampant in the US which the first section of my book Cowboys and Bleeding Hearts explores further