From Housing to Home Plate: Chavez Ravine, Cultural Transition, and the Construction of History


Nicole Rebec

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History is constructed. Like any craft, it is shaped by the views and conceptions of those active in its construction. In modern America, popular media and the press are as active as, and often more influential and wide-reaching than, respected historians in creating and portraying history and ?fact?. The story of Chavez Ravine is a tale that emphasizes the integral role popular media plays in constructing and disseminating information while underscoring the inherent bias and interest that shape these popularized portrayals. When exploring Chavez Ravine and the role of the press (i.e. the LA Times), the construction and interpretation of the events of Chavez Ravine by popular media underscores an apparent paradigmatic shift in American cultural values, one that ultimately embraces an emerging consumer society of progress and social rejuvenation through corporate investments, leisurely consumption and cultural development. An exploration of the move from tight-knit community to housing development to baseball stadium and the way the media portrayed these transitions underscores some of the major cultural and ideological shifts in 20th century America and the City of Los Angeles.


Lynn Dumenil




Walter C. & Patricia Harris Mack Fellowship

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