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“The City Too Busy to Care”: The Atlanta Youth Murders and the Southern Past, 1979–81

“The City Too Busy to Care”: The Atlanta Youth Murders and the Southern Past, 1979–81 Essay .................... "The City Too Busy to Care" The Atlanta Youth Murders and the Southern Past, 1979­81 by Paul Mokrzycki Renfro The Atlanta slayings aggravated long-held black anxieties about racial violence, white hegemony, and the African American future. They also undermined Atlanta's image as a space of racial moderation and economic progress in an otherwise retrograde region. For nearly two years, the death toll mounted as the city struggled to identify who was preying on its black children, adolescents, and young adults. "`This is a Start,' " East Hampton Star (N.Y.), March 12, 1981, 18, Box 152, Folder 8, Joseph E. Lowery papers, SCLC records, MSS 1083, MARBL, Emory University. Atlanta: Long seen as the robustly optimistic capital of the New South. Throughout its region's racial troubles, Atlanta always seemed a healthy, bustling citadel of good sense and goodwill, offering its own unique prospect for racial reconciliation in the South. But now, this brave center of the Sunbelt has been touched by a shadow--a mindless evil loose in its midst, executing its children with a cruel and systematic regularity. What does it mean to a city like Atlanta when it finds something like this happening to it? --Marshall http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Southern Cultures University of North Carolina Press

“The City Too Busy to Care”: The Atlanta Youth Murders and the Southern Past, 1979–81

Southern Cultures , Volume 21 (4) – Jan 31, 2015

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © Center for the Study of the American South.
ISSN
1534-1488
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Abstract

Essay .................... "The City Too Busy to Care" The Atlanta Youth Murders and the Southern Past, 1979­81 by Paul Mokrzycki Renfro The Atlanta slayings aggravated long-held black anxieties about racial violence, white hegemony, and the African American future. They also undermined Atlanta's image as a space of racial moderation and economic progress in an otherwise retrograde region. For nearly two years, the death toll mounted as the city struggled to identify who was preying on its black children, adolescents, and young adults. "`This is a Start,' " East Hampton Star (N.Y.), March 12, 1981, 18, Box 152, Folder 8, Joseph E. Lowery papers, SCLC records, MSS 1083, MARBL, Emory University. Atlanta: Long seen as the robustly optimistic capital of the New South. Throughout its region's racial troubles, Atlanta always seemed a healthy, bustling citadel of good sense and goodwill, offering its own unique prospect for racial reconciliation in the South. But now, this brave center of the Sunbelt has been touched by a shadow--a mindless evil loose in its midst, executing its children with a cruel and systematic regularity. What does it mean to a city like Atlanta when it finds something like this happening to it? --Marshall

Journal

Southern CulturesUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Jan 31, 2015

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