The Woman’s Gun Pamphlet

Through an oblique reference, I recently found a link to The Woman’s Gun Pamphlet. Edit: The link and the server appear to be gone. A PDF of the Pamphlet is available at the edit of this post.

WGP picture

It’s a very interesting publication that was written and published by a colloquium of radical feminists in 1975. The intent was to provide information about both guns themselves and about personal protection attitudes to women of that era who knew nothing about guns or personal protection. As such, I consider it an historically significant document. There’s quite a bit of political rhetoric in it but also a goodly amount of information. Even dry practice is touched on. Some morsels of dry wit are quite entertaining.

toc edit

Especially interesting to me is that it was written from the perspective of self-taught women of the time with some input from men and by doing primary and secondary research. What they considered important, how the information was structured, and how it was presented is insightful. There are a number of items in it that made me realize there are areas of my subject matter knowledge I take for granted.

Given this week’s confrontation between the Federal government and a quasi Posse Comitatus group in Oregon, I also found the political views and fears presented in a 1975 publication to be notable. When I graduated high school in 1972, I doubted I would be able to own a handgun, much less carry one in the majority of States, even slightly into the future at that time. The recent shenanigans regarding Weapons Carry reciprocity in Virginia by its anti-gun Governor and his lackey Attorney General echo items in the Pamphlet. The attitudes and tactics of hoplophobes and political control freaks have changed little in the past 50 years. A common one is ‘take something away, then give it back in exchange for something else.’ The saying ‘One step forward, two steps back’ comes to mind. Gun controllists play the long game, just like Mao Zedong, and never view their playbook as a zero sum game.

The Pamphlet took me a little over an hour to read cover to cover, so it’s not heavy reading. Anyone who teaches, either formally or informally, women or Gun Culture 2.0 will find it worthwhile reading.

Womens Gun pamphlet original

11 responses

  1. Leave it to a woman to call a work that takes a full hour to read a ‘pamphlet’. Moreover, the bottom line of the ‘pamphlet’ is to understand the legal code. Know what will be, and what is unlikely to be prosecuted. Be sure the ‘unlikely to be prosecuted’ is emphasized when explaining what happened to investigators.

    1. For the “International Standardization of Statistics Relating to Book Production and Periodicals” UNESCO defines a pamphlet as “a non-periodical printed publication of at least 5 but not more than 48 pages, exclusive of the cover pages.”

      Since WGP is 47 pages, it fits that definition.

      I disagree that the bottom line is understanding the legal code, since that topic only takes 9 pages of the 47. Perhaps you meant ‘at the end,’ which would be true. The Pamphlet was originally published on the Left Coast in 1975. Their likelihood of prosecution was much different than those of us who currently live in Free States would experience.

    2. I think you missed the point. Even though it was pretty clearly written.

  2. Great find! Thanks for sharing it.

  3. I love just love this. Thank you so much for sharing it.

  4. Wow, quite a find! I will definitely be sharing this with all of my female students. It’s refreshing to see the honesty displayed by these women.

  5. Reblogged this on Women and Guns and commented:
    This is definitely worth ready…

  6. […] and the need for safe spaces, which she cannot identify with. The discussion came about from the Woman’s Gun Pamphlet I posted a while ago. She and her husband had driven 14 hours to attend the one day training […]

  7. And for you collector types, for whom a PDF just won’t cut it, there are even several used copies available on Amazon for $9.99 + shipping (and no, I’m not one of the sellers, nor do I work for Jeff Bezos).
    Actually this little pamphlet seems to have more practical, basic information in it than in a lot of the ‘high-speed, low-drag’ books that have turned up over the last few years. That includes the legal advice at the end.

  8. Reblogged this on tacticalprofessor and commented:

    The Woman’s Gun Pamphlet came up in conversation during The Mingle yesterday. Since the original source is no more, I’m republishing this post for interested parties.

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