Jonathan Metzl is an acclaimed physician and sociologist who speaks, teaches, and writes on a range of topics including mental illness and gun violence, race and whiteness in America, health and healthcare, and diversity and structural competency in higher education.
Jonathan Metzl is the author of the groundbreaking book, Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment is Killing America’s Heartland. A New York Times bestseller, the book is an in-depth look at why so many working-class white Americans support politicians whose policies are literally killing them. The book was also the winner of the 2020 Robert F. Kennedy Book Award.
Being a gun violence expert, professor, and psychiatrist is a unique combination that allows Dr. Metzl to speak and write about gun violence in America, and in particular to address stereotypes that link guns with race or mental illness, or that blame mental illness for mass shootings and other gun crimes.
The topic is the focus of Dr. Metzl’s forthcoming, What We’ve Become: Living and Dying in a Country of Arms, a highly-anticipated book that, by looking at a racially-charged mass shooting in Nashville, Tennessee, reexamines how we as a nation should address gun violence.
Jonathan M. Metzl MD, PhD, is the Frederick B. Rentschler II Professor of Sociology and Psychiatry, and the director of the Department of Medicine, Health, and Society, at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. He received his MD from the University of Missouri, MA in humanities/poetics and psychiatric internship/residency from Stanford University, and PhD in American culture from University of Michigan. Winner of the 2020 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Book Award, the 2020 APA Benjamin Rush Award for Scholarship, and a 2010 Guggenheim fellowship, Dr. Metzl has written extensively about the relationships between guns, mass shootings, and mental illness. His books include The Protest Psychosis, Prozac on the Couch, Against Health: How Health Became the New Morality, Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment is Killing America’s Heartland, and What We’ve Become: Living and Dying in a Country of Arms.