I have lived in Georgia twice, once from 1994 in South Georgia in and around Savannah and again from 2010 to the present, in Atlanta, the capitol, and Columbus, a primarily industrial city of over 200,000 (United States Census Bureau, 2016). In that time, I have had an opportunity to contrast and compare the variety of communities and power structures. While Atlanta is metropolitan and Savannah is historical, Columbus primarily relies upon industry and a military base for employment.
While I have been here, I have observed that, while there are cultural institutions, a regional university, for example, it’s presence does not make Columbus a college town with the requisite cultural trappings. The university seems to serve industry, catering some programs to suit local industry, rather than the students’ career goals. Because I am extremely interested in musical cultures, or scenes as they are called, I queried a few people in Columbus and discovered that while there were music clubs and a record store or two at one time, those are no longer in existence. But there is an underground music scene because there seems to be one in every city and town, and some have pooled their resources to open a new venue to support those local and regional bands who support the club with fans and patronage to keep the venue alive. While there is some effort to transform the cultural scene in Columbus, the neighborhoods seem to be stuck in the past, though there are some distinct differences in Columbus from the neighborhoods in Atlanta as well as Savannah.