Suburban Ideals vs. New Realities: Informal Housing in South Gate

"[T]he idea that movies and stars inspire people from the world's pockets of desperate poverty to undertake treacherous journeys across oceans and borders to this city of immigrants is fatuous," writes UCLA's Eric Avila. "Immigrant understandings of the city rely...

About the Author

Ryan Reft is a historian of 20th and 21st century American history at the Library of Congress. His work has appeared in several journals including Souls, The Sixties, California History, Planning Perspectives, Southern California Quarterly, and the Journa
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Sexual Equality: Los Angeles, the Military Industrial Complex, and the Gay Liberation Movement

Sexual Equality: Los Angeles, the Military Industrial Complex, and the Gay Liberation Movement

For all its moral ambiguities, the military industrial complex has also provided a space for resistance and the assertion of rights and community for gay men and women across the U ...
The Women's Land Army

The Women's Land Army "Farmettes" for Suffrage During World War I

"The man with the hoe is gone. Six hundred thousand of him left the fields of America last year," observed the Los Angeles Times in April of 1918. Hundreds of thousands more would ...
Donald Trump's Latino Problem: Oranges, Immigration, and Labor in Southern California

Donald Trump's Latino Problem: Oranges, Immigration, and Labor in Southern California

With the Republican primaries on the horizon and Donald Trump's comments about Mexican migrants ringing in Angeleno ears, looking back at this history provides a valuable tool for ...
From Villa to Pacquiao: Filipino Boxing in L.A. and the Power of a Transnational Punch

From Villa to Pacquiao: Filipino Boxing in L.A. and the Power of a Transnational Punch

A decade and half into the 21st century, 2015 serves as useful moment to consider the history of Filipinos in America's boxing history and L.A.'s role in making it all happen.
From Bus Riders Union to Bus Rapid Transit: Race, Class, and Transit Infrastructure in Los Angeles

From Bus Riders Union to Bus Rapid Transit: Race, Class, and Transit Infrastructure in Los Angeles

With new discussions regarding the possible conversion of the Orange Line to rail, today serves as the perfect opportunity to examine the city's recent bus history, the attitudes t ...
From Small Farming to Urban Agriculture: El Monte and Subsistence Homesteading

From Small Farming to Urban Agriculture: El Monte and Subsistence Homesteading

Subsistence Homesteading project in El Monte and San Fernando gave select families the opportunity to supplement their income during the Great Depression with food they grew themse ...
A Clear Blue Vision: L.A. Light Rail Transit and Twenty Five Years of the Blue Line

A Clear Blue Vision: L.A. Light Rail Transit and Twenty Five Years of the Blue Line

The Blue Line is one of the most used light rail in the nation. With its 25th anniversary on the horizon this July, a look back at its creation proves a useful means to think about ...
The Lakewood Plan: Homeownership, Taxes, and Diversity in Postwar Suburbia

The Lakewood Plan: Homeownership, Taxes, and Diversity in Postwar Suburbia

The city of Lakewood pioneered city contracting for public services, establishing a controversial model replicated by countless other suburbs in Los Angeles and beyond.
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