News & Opinion

News about Atlanta issues, arts, events, and more

Jesse Hill

Jesse Hill had his finger in every pie during the civil rights era, from the AUC student sit-ins to the election of Maynard Jackson.

Donald Hollowell

If you wanted to fight injustice in the courts in the sixties—and win—you called the gutsy, stately Donald Hollowell, the go-to attorney for civil rights leaders and causes,

John Lewis

One of the youngest heroes of the civil rights movement, John Lewis moved to Atlanta in 1963 to head the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee.

Benjamin Mays

The eighth child of former South Carolina slaves, Benjamin Mays rose to become the longtime president of Morehouse College, building it into one of the nation’s foremost African American institutions.

The Atlanta Science Tavern

It’s eight o’clock on a Saturday night, and the back room of Manuel’s Tavern is packed. No, there’s not an election, and the World Series is months away. These patrons are waiting to hear about breakthroughs in synthetic biology. The crowd ranges from tattooed hipsters wearing Converse sneakers, planning a night

The Shelf: Tayari Jones

“My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist,” Tayari Jones begins her third novel, Silver Sparrow (Algonquin Books). That one line telegraphs all sorts of family dysfunction and tragedy, but the author reins in the melodrama nicely to produce a surprisingly subtle story about class, gender roles, and combustible secrets. The bigamist father does his best to ensure that his two wives and his two daughters—born four months apart—never meet. But of course, they do. The collision of the families is so clearly inevitable, the only mystery is when it will happen, not if.  Jones, who grew up in Atlanta and teaches now at Rutgers University, tells this story through the eyes of the teenage daughters: Chaurisse is the “legitimate” one, enjoying a fairly privileged life, while Dana, the “secret” one, watches from the shadows, strangely powerful in one sense: She and her mother at least know about the existence of the other family. “I feel like I live in both of their shoes,” Jones says of writing in the girls’ voices. “I was a daughter in a family of sons, so I know what it is not to be the chosen one, but at the same time feeling loved.” As with her previous novels, Leaving Atlanta and The Untelling, Jones sets this one in 1980s Atlanta. “The expression is, ‘You can never go home again,’” she says. “But I think it should be, ‘You can never leave home.’”*

Laughing Pizza

Lumping in a Lilliputian wheelchair in a hotel ballroom near the airport, six-year-old Abby Gilmore could not be coaxed to talk. Not even on the radio, by members of Q100’s The Bert Show, not even though she was about to leave for Disney World on Bert’s Big Adventure, a nonprofit that gives chronically and terminally ill children and their families a vacation. Minnie Mouse and Captain Jack Sparrow wandered the room, dancing with other kids, but Abby, who has spina bifida,

Off the Wall: Graffiti

Except for the Krog Street Tunnel, Atlanta has never been a haven for street artists. Even there, Cabbagetown neighbors have fought over stray tags. But the city’s urban cred inches forward this month as local galleries bring the paint-wielding rabble-rousers inside. Through May 14, Westside’s Sandler Hudson Gallery is featuring “all city” writer (graffiti slang for an artist whose work shows up all over town) Alex Brewer, aka Hense. And Get This! Gallery will host t

Maynard Jackson

The child of black Atlanta aristocrats, Jackson was the first grandson of John Wesley Dobbs, the unofficial “Mayor of Auburn Avenue” and a visionary who worked to register black voters.

Andrew Young

In MLK’s inner circle, Andrew Young was the refined diplomat.

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