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Some of the People Who Ate My Barbecue Didn't Vote for Me
The Life of Georgia Governor Marvin Griffin
Scott E. Buchanan
Author BioScott E. Buchanan is Assistant Professor of Political Science at The Citadel and the Director of The Citadel Symposium on Southern Politics. He is a contributor to The 2008 Presidential Election in the South.
Main DescriptionMarvin Griffin was Georgia's seventy-second governor. Apart from that simple fact, virtually everything else about his career is the subject of controversy. Griffin governed at a point in the late 1950s when the state was undergoing a profound political transition from a rural-dominated, segregationist culture to a more urban landscape. As he attempted to guide Georgia through years of tumultuous change and upheaval throughout the South, Griffin developed a reputation for being inflammatory on racial issues and merciless to his political enemies
In "Some of the People Who Ate My Barbecue Didn't Vote for Me," Scott Buchanan portrays Marvin Griffin as a Yellow Dog Democrat struggling against inevitable change. Griffin was viewed by many as a charismatic voice of resistance in the Georgia and the South in the wake of Brown v. Board of Education. He combined a staunch segregationist approach with economically progressive policies, assisting in Georgia's transformation from an agrarian economy to a more industrialized one.
Ironically, it was these efforts and the larger shift in politics that doomed Griffin's career, ensuring his administration would last only one term. In many ways, Griffin stands as a clear dividing line between the Old South and the New.
Reviews"Suitable for specialists and general readers interested in Georgia politcs."
--The Journal of American History
"...a readable and entertaining as well as thoroughly researched and informative look at the politics of the Deep South state of Georgia in the middle of the last century."
--Georgia Historical Quarterly
"...a valuable piece to the puzzle of Georgia and southern history in the twentieth century."
--The Journal of Southern History
"Any person with interest in political history would enjoy this accurate depiction of one of the last old-style Southern governors."
"It is a primer of how government functioned prior to the stringent laws today with our sunshine laws, competitive bids on state contracts, tenure for state employees, tight controls over state spending, voter literacy tests."
"This highly readable book is recommended for those interested in Southern history and the South's response to the civil rights movement."
--The Post and Courier
"I found Scott Buchanan's manuscript on Governor Marvin Griffin's life to be interesting and informative. The history of Georgia politics is excellent! I believe that anyone who is interested in Georgia politics should read this book."
--Carl E. Sanders, former governor of Georgia