The Bulletin—April 3, 2013
The Bulletin compiles news from in and around the US South. We hope these posts will provide space for lively discussion and debate regarding issues of importance to those living in and intellectually engaging with the US South.
- Some important William Faulkner archival material is going up for auction in New York. Considered one of the most significant literary figures in the United States in the twentieth century, much of Faulkner's work centered on the fictional Yoknapatawpha County in Mississippi. Sotheby's announced on March 28, 2013 that the prolific author's Nobel Prize medal could end up being sold for over two million dollars. Other items to be auctioned include the first draft of Faulkner's Nobel speech, unpublished letters from Faulkner to his wife, Estelle, and an early unpublished story. According to Reuters, some of the items were found on the Faulkner family's Virginia property. According to an article in The New York Times, the Faulkner family hopes that a public institution will end up purchasing the material.
- A recent poll commissioned by Democrats reveals that Atlanta's political landscape is deeply divided. The poll results portray Atlanta as divided into three sections that vote very differently: the South Side, Middle Atlanta, and the North Side. South Side voters tend to be Democrats and members of racial and ethnic minorities; Middle Atlanta is split along ethnic and ideological lines; while North Side voters are more conservative and are generally white. The blog "Blogging While Blue: News & Views from a Few Spirited Georgia Democrats" declared that the poll is important because Atlanta elections are typically decided by Middle Atlanta, with its "multi-racial, multi-cultural, multi-ideology, and multi-partisan" makeup. This is because voters on the North and South Sides generally cancel one another out, leaving Middle Atlanta the decider in metropolitan elections.
- On March 27, 2013 Arkansas legislators overrode Democratic Governor Mike Beebe's veto of a law that will require voters to show photo identification at the polls. When the law takes effect on January 1, 2014, Arkansas will join eighteen other states that have introduced similar laws requiring voter identification at the polls this year. According to The Boston Globe, the American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas executive director Rick Sklar called the override a "terrible shame," stating that the group is prepared to sue in order to block the enforcement of the new law. African American legislators in Arkansas have compared the new law to the poll taxes used in southern states during the Jim Crow era.