7 Best Books About Atlanta Update 05/2022

Atlanta Paradox by David L. Sjoquist

Even though jobs are being created quickly in the greater Atlanta area, poverty in the city itself is still very high, and Atlanta’s economic boom hasn’t done much to close the gap between the rich and poor in the suburbs. This book looks into the main reasons why this isn’t true. Both the legacy of past racial segregation and urban sprawl work against inner city blacks, according to a new study. Many people still live in traditional black neighborhoods south of the city center, but jobs have moved to the northern suburbs. This means they have long commutes because they have to drive far to get to work. The book also shows some good signs. As far as I know, not many white people still have negative stereotypes of black people. Whites and blacks both want to live in more integrated neighborhoods, and I think that’s a good thing. It’s also possible that racial inequality won’t stay in place in a city where so much else has changed. The rise of a dynamic black middle class and the success of many black-owned businesses in the area also give the authors hope. It’s one of the volumes in a study of urban inequality in multiple cities.

Atlanta: Race, Class And Urban Expansion by Larry Keating

Atlanta, the heart of the New South, is a city that has become a global city because of its economic growth. It was able to bid for and win the 1996 Summer Olympics because of this. But the truth is that the region’s rapid growth over the last twenty years has made things more unequal, especially for African Americans. When Martin Luther King, Jr. was born and raised in Atlanta, the city where he lived and worked, it was one of the most divided cities in the United States.

Even though African Americans won the mayor’s office and the City Council, development plans have stayed in the hands of private business interests. Keating tells a lot of sad stories. People did not have a say in the development of Underground Atlanta, the rapid rail system, MARTA, the Braves stadium, public housing, and the Olympic Games. Protests from neighborhood groups, the needs of the poor, and advice from planners were not taken into account by business and political elites.

Atlanta Unbound: Enabling Sprawl through Policy and Planning by Carlton Wade Basmajian

Looking at Atlanta, Georgia, one might think that the city’s sprawl, poor air quality, and uncertain water supply are all caused by a lack of planning, especially at the regional level. In his book, Atlanta Unbound, Carlton Wade Basmajian shows that Atlanta’s low-density urban form and its problems have been very well thought out and coordinated. Over the years, Basmajian used a shrewd analysis to show how regional policies spread across political borders and framed local debates in different parts of the country. He looks at the role of the Atlanta Regional Commission’s planning meetings, which he thinks may have led to the urban sprawl that they were supposed to stop. Basmajian looks at four examples: regional land development plans, water supply strategies, growth management policies, and transportation infrastructure programs. Each one shows how citizens, planners, regional commissions, state government, and federal agencies work together. To what end and for whom is Atlanta’s regional planning process working?

Among the books in the series Urban Life, Land Use and Policy are those by Zane L. Miller, David Stradling and Larry Bennett.

The Atlanta Youth Murders and the Politics of Race by Bernard Headley

At least 29 black children and young adults were killed by a serial killer in Atlanta between the summer of 1979 and the spring of 1981. The “Atlanta tragedy,” as it came to be known, was quickly labeled a hate crime because it got national attention. But when a young black man was arrested and found guilty of the killings, the public’s attention quickly changed. Bernard Headley, a well-known criminologist, was in Atlanta at the time of the tragedy and has written an in-depth look at the social and political consequences both in Atlanta and across the country. Focusing on a single historical event, Headley shows how race and class are still a big problem in modern-day America.

The Bahá’í: The Religious Construction of a Global Identity by McMullen, Michael

The Bahá’ Faith is one of the world’s fastest-growing religions, but it isn’t very well known. Adherents think they are all connected by a common belief that goes across national borders. Michael McMullen looks at how the Bahá’ build and keep their global identity. The Bahá’ community in Atlanta, Georgia, is a good example of this. His book is the first to look at all of the beliefs of this little-known faith in depth.

McMullen says that, according to the Bahá’, Buddha, Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed are all teachers of “the Truth” who were sent by God to help their cultures and times. religious teaching comes from the teachings of Bahá’u’lláh, a 19th-century Persian. It tells people to think of themselves as global citizens. It also tries to build a sense of unity among its members by adhering to a Bahá’ world view. By looking at the Atlanta Bahá’ community, McMullen shows how this global identity is interpreted in this city. He talks about things like: the Bahá’ “Administrative Order,” Bahá’ evangelicalism, and the social boundaries between Bahá’s and the rest of society.

Challenging U.S. Apartheid: Atlanta and Black Struggles for Human Rights, 1960–1977 by Winston A. Grady-Willis

Innovative and detailed, “Challenging U.S. Apartheid” is a history of African-Americans in Atlanta who tried to improve their lives, equality, and opportunities from the early 1960s until Maynard Jackson’s first term as mayor came to an end in 1977. Winston A. Grady-Willis tells a story that goes from the student nonviolent direct action movement and the first experiments in urban field organizing to the reemergence of Black women-centered activism. Grady-Willis says that the work of African Americans in Atlanta was important to the development of Black freedom movements in the late twentieth century.

Grady-Willis talks about Black activism in terms of human rights, not civil rights. As he shows, civil rights were just one part of a bigger fight for self-determination, a fight to dismantle a system of inequality that he calls “apartheid structures.” In this book, he draws on archival research and interviews with activists from the 1960s and 1970s to show a wide range of activities, organizations, and achievements. These include the neighborhood-based efforts of Atlanta’s Black working poor, clandestine groups like the African American women’s group Sojourner South, and the creation of independent Black intellectual institutions like the Institute of the Black World. Grady-book Willis’s about the politics of the Black freedom movement in Atlanta shows that there are many different ideologies, gender and class tensions, and disagreements about different policies, strategies, and tactics. Challenging U.S. Apartheid also shows the work of grassroots activists, who are on the same level as well-known people. Women who played important roles in the fight for civil rights in Atlanta are at the very front of this history.

From Southern Wrongs to Civil Rights: The Memoir of a White Civil Rights Activist by Sara Mitchell Parsons

It tells the story of Atlanta during the civil rights era through the eyes of a white upper-class woman who became an outspoken advocate for integration and racial equality. This is a first-hand account. Sara Mitchell Parsons, a wealthy white woman who grew up in segregated Atlanta, was not the first person you would think would become a civil rights activist. There were only two people who knew her: those who raised her when she was a child, and those who later helped raise her children. As a young woman, she did what everyone else did. She married a conservative man, went to the country club, and played bridge. Parsons, on the other hand, was becoming more and more worried about racial segregation.

In a memoir that includes diary entries, Parsons talks about how her moral compass changed. When she runs for the Atlanta Board of Education, she doesn’t get much help from her husband, so she runs on a quietly integrationist platform. When she gets elected, she gets more outspoken about unfair school conditions and the slow pace of integration. Her work brings her into contact with people like Martin Luther King, Jr., and his wife, Coretta Scott King. For a while, she has two lives. She sometimes goes from an NAACP meeting on Auburn Avenue to an all-white party in Buckhead. She eventually gives up her ladies’ clubs, and her involvement in the civil rights movement cost her many friends and her first marriage.

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