have formed the general public’s approachrnto the subject.rnNow a book has appeared which is designedrnto help journalists—and the publicrn—become acquainted with the guncontrolrnresearch of the 1980’s and 90’s.rnDon Kates and Gary Kleck hope torn”bridge the vast gap between scholarlyrnunderstanding of firearms issues andrnhow they are generally reported and discussedrnin the popular media.” Both menrnare well qualified for the task: Kleck is arnFlorida State University criminologyrnprofessor who has made a specialty of thernstudy of gun ownership and use and theirrnrelationship to crime; Kates, a civil rightsrnattorney and scholar noted for his writingrnon gun issues.rnBoth Kates and Kleck identify themselvesrnas liberals; each appears to have arrivedrnat his present position in the gunrndebate through an evolutionary processrnspanning many years; and each acknowledgesrnthat reasonable arguments can bernframed for some types of control on thernownership and use of firearms. The authors,rnin fact, go out of their way to distancernthemselves from what they characterizernas the absolutist positions taken byrngroups such as the National Rifle Association.rnYet both men focus a critical eyernon the rhetoric and goals of the guncontrolrnlobby as it has developed sincernthemid-1960’s.rnA well-written introductory chapter byrnDon Kates presents an array of certainrngun-related “facts” routinely cited byrnthe media. He demonstrates how thesern”facts” are inconsistent with the relevantrnevidence established by qualified researchers,rnand then outlines what he seesrnas “the historical antecedents whichrnhelped form today’s media-based conventionalrnwisdom.”rnIn general, the media’s position onrnthis issue has mirrored the views of thernantigun lobby. Not until 1981 did anyrnserious challenge to this consensusrnemerge. Surprisingly, the shot across thernbow was a study funded and publishedrnby the National Institute of Justice (NIJ)rnand conducted by scholars with antigunrnbiases. The researchers were shocked byrntheir findings:rnThere appears to be no strongrncausal connechons between privaterngun ownership and the crimernrate…. It is commonly hypothesizedrnthat much criminal violencern. . . would not occur were firearmsrngenerally less available. There isrnno persuasive evidence that supportsrnthis view.rnThe years following release of the NIJ reportrnhave witnessed a flowering of scholarship,rnmuch of it disputing the conclusionsrnof the two previous decades. Citingrnthe treatment of specific gun-related issues,rnKleck has little doubt that “the nation’srnmost important news sources dornindeed shape information on gun issuesrnin a way which encourages pro-controlrnconclusions.” However, in keeping withrnthis careful approach, he takes pains torndisassociate himself from any suggestionrnthat the antigun crusade is an inherentlyrnleftist enterprise, arguing instead that thernmedia’s antigun stance is “a thing apart.”rnHe attributes the prejudice againstrnfirearms not to any dishonest intentionsrnon the part of reporters but to ignorancernof the facts. A dubious position, at best.rnBefore retiring in J 994, Harry Hogan wasrna specialist in law enforcement, criminalrnjustice, and public safety at the CongressionalrnResearch Service of the Library ofrnCongress.rnBeyond All thernShoutingrnby David A. BovenizerrnNashville 1864:rnThe Dying of Lightrnby Madison JonesrnNashville: ].S. Sanders & Company;rn129 pp., $17.95rnWhile Cold Mountain, the admittedlyrnwell-wrought novel about arnConfederate deserter, has achieved bestsellerrnstatus, a story of a quite differentrnsort has gained a modest but devotedrnreadership and demonstrated anew therngifts of one of America’s finest writers.rnNashville 1864 is a mere 129 pagesrnlong. Still, it is best not read in the rushrnof a single sitting, since Madison Jones,rnas William Walsh declared in a recent issuernof the Chattahoochee Review, is “therngreatest unknown novelist in the UnitedrnStates, if not the world.” Indeed, my ownrnadmiration for Jones’s work is so large,rnmy indebtedness as reader to his giftsrn(and generosit)’) as author so deep, thatrnmy observations on Nashville 1864 mustrnplace his latest novel within the contextrnof an achievement that is among therngreatest in contemporary Americanrnletters.rnJones is probably known to the generalrnreader only indirectly as the author ofrnAn Exile, a novella that became the basisrnfor the movie / Walk the Line. I havernnever seen the movie, or, if I have, I’vernforgotten it; the novella is an unforgettablernmasterpiece that explores thernmysterious foundations of the humanrnpersonality, and the presumptions ofrnsuperficial virtue. The complex interrelationshipsrnamong temptations, the pridernthat goeth before a fall: these are the difficultrnthemes to which Jones elegantly attends.rnWalsh is correct when he writesrnthat Jones’s “novels are as universal asrnthose of Faulkner, Hardy, and Flaubert,rnand as framed in the architecture and traditionrnof the Greek tragedians as onernwould hope to discover.”rnAnother name—another sensibilit)’—rnwith whom Madison Jones invites comparisonrnis that of Flannery O’Connor.rnThe hardfisted Larr}’ Brown, a genuinernheir of Faulkner, found himself thinkingrnof Jones after reading O’Connor’s lettersrnin The Habit of Being. Brown’s reflectionsrnare notable:rn[Jones’s] novels. .. possess that relentlessrnforward drive of narrativernwhile allowing the reader to witnessrnthe ordinary things of life withrngreat clarity, things like weatherrnand the seasons and the way thernsky looks in the morning after arngood rain. The South that hernwrites of is a vivid, mysterious placernin certain scenes, and in others itrncan be as familiar as the back ofrnyour own hand. [Jones] gets yourndeeply and personally involvedrnwith his people and their struggles.rnI m m e d i a t e scrxiccrnCHRONICLESrnNEW SUBSCRIBERSrn