I’m Patrick Blanchfield, I’m a writer, and this is my website. If you’d like to read my recent published longform, reviews, and other work, there are links below.

I’m currently writing two books: Gunpower: The System of American Violence (out from Verso in January 2020) and Fallen: The Last Judgment of the American Catholic Church (out later from Bold Type). I am represented by Markus Hoffmann of RHA Literary. I’m always happy for solicitations from editors; please feel free to email me or drop me a message on Twitter. I enjoy doing talks, podcasts, media appearances, etcetera, for all kinds of audiences, popular and academic; do reach out if you’re interested. My full CV is here.

I haven’t posted to the blog section of this site in five years now, but if you’re looking for representative pieces from it that have also proven popular online, I suggest this (about writing on gun violence in general), this (on Sandy Hook and race and class), and this (on mass shootings and misogyny).


  • “Parkland, One Year Later.” Feature in Bookforum (April/May 2019). Available at: https://www.bookforum.com/inprint/026_01/20802.
  • “Suffer the Children.” Essay in The Revealer (March 20, 2019). Available at: https://therevealer.org/suffer-the-children/.
  • “Dupe Throat: Bob Woodward’s Self-Parody.” Book Review in n+1 (September 12, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2NgQUvn.
  • “The John McCain Phenomenon.” Essay in The Baffler (August 27, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2MVdUny.
  • “What Makes Hunting So Divisive.” Book Review in The New Republic (August 23, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2BNwedV.
  • “Soul Murder.” Essay in The Revealer (August 15, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2wgYcZI.
  • “Summer Camp in the Nightmare Factory.” Essay in The Revealer (June 20, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2yMzPHM.
  • “Declaration of War.” Book Review in The Nation (June 20, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2IufTct.
  • “Big Bang Theory.” Book Review in Bookforum (Summer 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2Kl2yoj.
  • “Prig and Pig.” Book Review in The Baffler (April 24, 2018). https://bit.ly/2w7S88V.
  • “The Market Can’t Solve a Massacre.” Essay in Splinter (March 14, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2ILxihR.
  • “Children of color already face violent discipline in schools. Arming teachers will get them killed.” Essay in The Intercept (February 28, 2018). Available at:  http://bit.ly/2ouhHLm.
  • “Adrift in America.” Essay in Document Journal (February 2, 2018). Available at: https://bit.ly/2tEAsgJ.
  • “The Quiet Americans.” Book Review in Bookforum (February/March 2018). Available at: http://bit.ly/2ofY49y.
  • “Black Hole Sun God.” Book Review in n+1 (January 6, 2018). Available at: http://bit.ly/2m3wZV8.
  • “Derangement Syndromes.” Essay in The Revealer (December 21, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2BnF1yH.
  • “Ghosts of 2012.” Essay in n+1 (December 14, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2kH0Vqj.
  • “The Brutal Origins of Gun Rights.” Book Review in The New Republic (December 11, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2Dxf3dm. 
  • “Magic Bullets.” Essay in Logic, No. 3 (Winter 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2ESOhjp.
  • “Guns and ‘The Price We Pay for Freedom.’”  Essay in The New York Times (November 8, 2017). Available at: http://nyti.ms/2BaM7a4.
  • “Trump Is President, But Kevin Spacey Can’t Even Play One on TV.” Essay in The New Republic (November 2, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2yh0bga.
  • “Silicon Soirée.” Essay in The Revealer (October 17, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2A1FhmO.
  • “The Honest Way to Talk About Guns: Focus on Gun Deaths.” Op-Ed in The New York Daily News (October 5, 2017). Available at: http://nydn.us/2yqWbxl 
  • “Thoughts and Prayers.” Essay in n+1 (October 3, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2gcKsaW.
  • “The Annihilator.” Essay in n+1 (August 9, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2uQS7QK.
  • “Shot in the Dark.” Digital Feature in Esquire (August 1, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2vLuGwy.
  • “Social Media Forensics.” Essay The Baffler (May 31, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2t2BeWv.
  • “Mirror Stage President.” Essay in n+1 (May 2, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2sYbXfQ.
  • “White Defenders.” Book Review in The New Inquiry, Vol. 60 (May 2017).  Available at: http://bit.ly/2t1IH8z.
  • “Like the Weather.” Book Review in Dissent, 64 No. 2 (Spring 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2n6q3tD.
  • “What We Do Best.” Essay in n+1 (April 7, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2o18l6C.
  • “Sound and Fury on the Delaware.” Essay in The Revealer (April 5, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2nOsj5a.
  • “Etched in Eternity.” Essay in n+1 (March 1, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2ocZS0y.
  • “Trump’s Tlön.” Essay in n+1 (February 19, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2mKMn7N.
  • “New Praetorianism.” Essay in The Baffler (February 17, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2mKXRbq.
  • “Private Suffering in Political Circumstances.” Essay in The Revealer (February 7, 2017). Available at: http://bit.ly/2kY7ndg.
  • “Brokenheartlands: Arlie Russell Hochschild’s Strangers in Their Own Land.” Review in The Revealer (December 7, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/2hgNRYr.
  • “On Bullshit News.” Essay in The Revealer (November 28, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/2jwspQ9.
  • “There Are Endurable Moments.” Essay in The Revealer (November 11, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/2iHRqU2.
  • “Stop Calling the United States a Banana Republic.” Essay, co-authored with Patrick Iber, in The Baffler (November 7, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/2k42L5Z.
  • “Cycles of Memory.” Interview with Randy R. Potts in The Revealer (October 4, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/2d3lYzV.
  • “Brave Moles and Hungry Ghosts: 9/11 Memento Mori.” Essay in The Revealer (September 9, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/2dLzrcP.
  • “They’re Coming for the Ones You Love: My Weekend of Gun Training in the Desert.” Cover feature in The Nation Undertaken with support from The Nation Investigative Fund and The Puffin Foundation (August 29 – September 5, 2016 Issue). Available at: http://bit.ly/2aAYMJT.
  • “The American Soul is a Murderous Soul.” Essay in Foreign Policy (August 10, 2016). Available at: http://atfp.co/2brQJPn.
  • “Recoil Operation.” Essay in The New Inquiry (July 11, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/29yl2od.
  • “What Could Actually Help Us Reduce Gun Violence.” Essay in Upworthy (June 30, 2016). Available at: http://u.pw/29meZ3W.
  • “Trumpophasis: On What Cannot Be Said.” Essay in The Revealer (June 23, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/29zl3oE.
  • “Stirring Emotions, Shooting Blanks.” Op-Ed in The New York Daily News, Sunday Edition (June 26, 2016). Available at: http://nydn.us/28Vfw9H.
  • “Special Pleading: On the Identity Politics of ‘Blue Lives Matter.’” Essay in The Revealer (May 24, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/29tNki7.
  • “Freud and the American Death Drive.” Essay in The Los Angeles Review of Books Marginalia (May 7, 2016). http://bit.ly/1rDa9o1.
  • “Why is Gun Control Such a Tricky Issue?” Essay in Upworthy (April 26, 2016). Available at: http://u.pw/1YSgLd3.
  • “The Gun Control We Deserve.” Essay in n+1 (April 21, 2016). Available at: http://bit.ly/1Wh2ebH.
  • “Review: Considering Hate.” Book review in The Revealer (December 22, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/29RSKDv.
  • “God and Guns, Part II.” Report in The Revealer (November 19, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/29QTeK3.
  • “God and Guns, Part I.” Historical essay in The Revealer (September 25, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/29Lrk1w.
  • “When the Disruptor is a Gun.” Report in The Trace (September 25, 2015.) Available at: http://bit.ly/1LMp6LV.
  • “Oath Keeper Elaborates on Vision for Open Carry March in Ferguson.” Report in The Trace (August 25, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/1EikafM.
  • “Meet the Open Carry Activist Running for Texas State Senate.” Report in The Trace (August 13, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/1PnzokM.
  • “The Sense of Senselessness.” Essay in The Los Angeles Review of Books Marginalia (July 24, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/1CZqxUN.
  • “What the Whataburger Flap Revealed About the Self-Identities of Open-Carry Activists.” Essay in The Trace. (July 22, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/1Ijck5B.
  • “The Sometimes Tragic Physics of Celebratory July 4th” Essay in The Trace (July 2, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/1NBJOfg.
  • “Data Shows That Americans Wanted to Talk About Guns After Charleston — Until Confederate Flag Debate Heated Up.” Report in The Trace (June 29, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/1NuizTU.
  • “The Psychology of an Ethnic Fraud.” Essay in The Daily Beast (June 13, 2015). Available at: http://thebea.st/1L53IOU.
  • “Shooting in the Name Of.” Essay in The Revealer (May 5, 2015). Available at: http://bit.ly/29GQUTz.
  • “Twitter’s Outrage Machine Must Be Stopped – But Justine Sacco is the Wrong Poster Child” Op-Ed in The Washington Post (February 24, 2015). Available at: http://wapo.st/1ApIrfL.
  • “The Masculine Mistake.” Op-Ed in The New York Daily News, Sunday Edition. (November 16, 2014). Available at: http://nydn.us/1xKN7v0.
  • “Mary-Jane Rubenstein’s Worlds Without End: The Many Lives of the Multiverse.” Book Review in The Revealer (October 22, 2014). Available at: http://bit.ly/29TaSeU.
  • “What Do Guns Say?Op-Ed in The New York Times (May 4, 2014). Available at: http://nyti.ms/1fJhfRx.
  • “At the Gun Show, Family Businesses and Angry Young Men.” The Daily Beast (April 24, 2013). Available at: http://thebea.st/1dxEIip.
  • “Why I Gave Up My Guns.” Op-Ed in The New York Daily News, Sunday Edition (January 11, 2013). Available at: http://nydn.us/JgApyt.

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