Tag: Atlanta

The Lake and the Landfill

The Lake and the Landfill

Hannah S. Palmer, illustrations by Nate Beaty

The mysterious Lake Charlotte Nature Preserve in Atlanta is no longer a lake, nor a nature preserve, but a private two hundred–acre wilderness next to a landfill. This former public lake has a long and complicated history, including a suburban fishing club, a tragic debutante, botched plans for an inner-city campground, dumped bodies, and a landfill thwarted by organized Black neighbors. How did this once prized destination end up preserved in a state of arrested development? In 2019, as the landfills are capped and this corner of Atlanta begins to gentrify, the city considers whether to preserve Lake Charlotte again. In this personal essay, the author creeps through the fence to see what's left of the lake, the dam, and the Paleolithic quarry sites. Can Atlanta overcome a development pattern that paired neighborhoods for "Negro expansion" with industrial contamination? Fenced off for forty years, can nature—and the community—repair itself?

Grant Park, Atlanta

Grant Park, Atlanta

Steve Gallo

This article examines the role that Atlanta's Grant Park (1883) played in promoting the idea of social continuity between the Old and New Souths in the final decades of the nineteenth century. By the 1880s, Atlanta's leaders successfully leveraged their city's quick recovery from the Civil War to present it as an exemplar of New South success that would lead the region into an era of prosperity. As they did, they simultaneously sought to reassure white citizens that the march into the future did not require them to abandon their cultural attachment to the romanticized Old South. Consequently, they simulated the purported environmental and social conditions of the antebellum period within the grounds of Grant Park in order to reassure white Atlantans that central tenets of antebellum society would be maintained amid the push for modernization. The result was a space that privileged a conception of southern identity premised on white supremacy and patriarchal control above all others and codified social difference within the landscape.

“Come Out Slugging!”

“Come Out Slugging!”

Rachel Gelfand

This article chronicles the formation of the Atlanta Lesbian Feminist Alliance (ALFA) and its creative grassroots activism from 1972 to 1975. Studying ALFA offers a critical window into how lesbian feminists were envisioning political organizing, coalition building, and sports in the New South. ALFA utilized radical strategies learned in prior movements, from antiwar to civil rights activism, to create a lesbian feminist politic in Little Five Points, Atlanta. Drawing on oral histories, this essay studies ALFA activism to challenge media coverage of lesbian and gay life, pass the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), utilize the “softball strategy,” and build regional networks through the Great Southeast Lesbian Conference.

Things That Don’t Fit

Things That Don’t Fit

Joseph Crespino
Cyclorama

Cyclorama

Daniel Judt
They Didn’t Put That on the Huntley-Brinkley! A Vagabond Reporter Encounters the New South (Review)

They Didn’t Put That on the Huntley-Brinkley! A Vagabond Reporter Encounters the New South (Review)

Ferrel Guillory

As luck would have it, Hunter James began his employment at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on the same day that Ralph McGiIl, the newspaper's celebrated columnist, won a Pulitzer Prize. With excitement all around and his mind pondering the McGiIl legend, James had difficulty completing his assigned task of rewriting civic club announcements. It was not the only time from the late 1950s to the mid-1970s that the author found himself somewhat out of sync with events swirling in the South.

Driving Dixie Down: Removing the Confederate Flag from Southern State Capitals: An Excerpt

Driving Dixie Down: Removing the Confederate Flag from Southern State Capitals: An Excerpt

James Forman Jr.
Southern Culture at the Crossroads: Presenting the South at the Centennial Olympic Games

Southern Culture at the Crossroads: Presenting the South at the Centennial Olympic Games

George Holt
And the Dead Shall Rise: An Overview

And the Dead Shall Rise: An Overview

Steve Oney
From Smiles to Miles: Delta Air Lines Flight Attendants and Southern Hospitality

From Smiles to Miles: Delta Air Lines Flight Attendants and Southern Hospitality

Drew Whitelegg
“The South Got Something to Say”: Atlanta’s Dirty South and the Southernization of Hip-Hop America

“The South Got Something to Say”: Atlanta’s Dirty South and the Southernization of Hip-Hop America

Darren E. Grem
Your Dekalb Farmers Market: Food and Ethnicity in Atlanta

Your Dekalb Farmers Market: Food and Ethnicity in Atlanta

Tore C. Olssen