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Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence Paperback – September 14, 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
FSKG is really not so much a graphic novel as it is illustrated autobiographical expositionary prose. This is to say that there is very little dialogue from the characters and the story is told via narration rather than unfolding based on character interactions. As a story it lacks many things (including a climax or even a proper conclusion), but one thing it has in spades in believability. After all, one can hardly expect real life to unfold like a fictional Hollywood production or classic novel. The purpose of this comic is not to entertain, but to educate.Read more ›
Canada's first memory of street violence came at age 4, when his two older brothers had a jacket stolen at the playground. The boys' mother sent them right back to fetch it, promising them a beating "ten times as bad as what that little thief could do to you," if they failed.
They left the house in tears and returned triumphant, with the jacket. Their mother sat them down and told them it was a lesson in not becoming a victim. The author, her youngest, was unconvinced.
Then a neighborhood boy who habitually refused to fight was "stretched" over a car and savagely beaten by a group of boys. "The lesson was brutal and unmistakable. No matter who you fought, he could never beat you that bad."
Canada's memoir is a thoughtful, moving portrayal of social behavior in a culture of violence. A quick study, Canada learned to use posturing, attitude and negotiation as well as his fists to minimize the number and severity of violent encounters.
But he is absolutely convinced that violence is a learned response, not innate. He and the other small boys, says Canada, were aghast at the prospect of fighting. Only fear of worse violence and a life of cowering in corners spurred them to fight.
Today, says Canada, the same imperatives operate. But guns have shattered the rituaized formality of the pecking order. Toughness is no longer determined by fighting skills or "heart" but by willingness to pull the trigger.Read more ›
I highly recommend it!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Stupid book. Had to buy as a requirement for school. No idea why we read something so poorly written for English class.Published 6 months ago by Cricket
Gives one insight into the challenges faced by anyone that has to or may have to deal with or address violence.Published 14 months ago by L. N. Mcdonald
A beautifully written and extremely provocative book. Anyone concerned about escalating violence in America or wanting to better understand the pernicious influence of handguns on... Read morePublished 19 months ago by fluteguy
Fantastic, insightful read - the illustrations are also great. I will recommend this book far and wide.Published 22 months ago by Kristin Louise Duncombe
The book came perfect, no scratch, torn pages, and it was a hard cover whih was amazing. There was only a little wear. But it was fine.Published on May 10, 2014 by diana h
I heard about this book on the Freakanomics podcast. It's quite poignant. I highly recommend it to anyone. word wordPublished on February 20, 2014 by Serpico
This is one of the desk books I have ever read. It is inspiring and thought provoking. Canada is an unsung American hero.Published on February 10, 2014 by Wendy Liz
One of the first bios I read in my field of study, and I refer to it often. Canada's narrative is moving, sincere, and an example of how hope can bloom where there was none.Published on January 1, 2014 by Donna Salazar