Date of Award


Degree Type


University or Center

Atlanta University (AU)


School of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name



First Advisor

Dr. Margaret N. Rowley


This thesis investigates the reaction to Maynard H. Jackson’s election as the first black mayor of a major southern city, Atlanta, through selected articles of its major newspaper, The Atlanta Constitution, covering the period of Jackson’s announcement of his candidacy through the end of his first two years in office. This particular paper was chosen because it was the dominant day-time newspaper and because of its moderate viewpoints and its emphasis on political news. While The Atlanta Constitution was aware of race as a factor, it was able to be objective in its treatment of Jackson. For example, the articles did not elaborate on Jackson’s race, but rather his qualifications and platform which made him eligible to be mayor of Atlanta. One would expect more criticism, and more emphasis on the race issue, but there was very little of such in the newspaper’s reporting of events during the Jackson era.

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