Intersections

Riding the Big Red Car: Work, Leisure, and Community in Multiethnic L.A.

A look at the history of the Pacific Electric Red Cars and its ability to ferry working class and communities of color to their jobs and cheap amusements provides a useful primer for the future of Los Angeles transit.

About the Author

Ryan Reft has a PhD in urban history from the University of California San Diego. He is co-editor of the blog Tropics of Meta.
RSS icon

Recent Stories
Spitting Hot Fire: Malibu Wildfires and the Santa Anas

Spitting Hot Fire: Malibu Wildfires and the Santa Anas

Malibu is the wildfire capital of North America and, possibly, the world, but residents continue to have a love affair with the beachfront area.
The Pirates of Los Angeles: Music, Technology, And Counterculture in Southern California

The Pirates of Los Angeles: Music, Technology, And Counterculture in Southern California

During the late 1960s and early 1970s, pirates in Los Angeles provided a window into the tensions over access to music that besets the difficult relationship that exists between ar ...
Shifting Lanes: The Demise of the Southern California Autotopia

Shifting Lanes: The Demise of the Southern California Autotopia

To understand the City of Angels, Joan Didion once wrote, one needed to immerse oneself in the freeway experience or, as she put it, "the only secular communion Los Angeles has."
Seventy Years Later: The Zoot Suit Riots and the Complexity of Youth Culture

Seventy Years Later: The Zoot Suit Riots and the Complexity of Youth Culture

This June marks the 70th anniversary of the Zoot Suit Riots, which some critics call "the worst mob violence in Los Angeles history."
A Dive into the Deep End: The Importance of the Swimming Pools in Southern California

A Dive into the Deep End: The Importance of the Swimming Pools in Southern California

Despite, or perhaps because of, its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, SoCal's enthusiasm for pool-based recreation knows few bounds.
From Better Luck Tomorrow to K-Town: Asian Americans and Los Angeles in 21st Century Media

From Better Luck Tomorrow to K-Town: Asian Americans and Los Angeles in 21st Century Media

Los Angeles and its entertainment industry has played and continues to play a central role in the crafting of the Asian American identity.
Courting Division: How Three Southern California Court Cases Bolstered and Hindered Multiracial Civil Rights Movements

Courting Division: How Three Southern California Court Cases Bolstered and Hindered Multiracial Civil Rights Movements

Southern California's landscape provided the setting for three critical court cases that reveal the ability of the law to cleave efforts toward equal rights.
Retail California: Shopping Centers, Malls, and Creating a New Consumerism

Retail California: Shopping Centers, Malls, and Creating a New Consumerism

Three examples confirm Southern California's critical role in the mall's early formation: the Broadway Crenshaw Center, the Valley Center, and San Diego's Linda Vista Shopping Cent ...
All Articles Mapped