Los Angeles

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Los Angeles was the first product off the assembly line of American urban planning. Turned on in the late 19th century, the city-making machine was fueled by an immense immigration of people who sought to create a new type of city out of the previously quaint pueblo. They also strove to craft the first major city developed primarily by Americans and outside of European archetypes. As a result, Los Angles is not only incredibly diverse, but also nearly impossible to define. Since it is a product of the American machine, understanding the community of Los Angeles becomes vital to understanding the United States. But to fully comprehend the present Los Angeles, one must look at the process that created it. Specifically, Los Angeles was created by upper class Anglo citizens of the 20th century, who strove to materialize their imagined reality of a rural city by establishing a process where affluent citizens fled to the suburbs and left the lower class residents their more urban rundown leftovers. This created world then became the setting for resistance from various groups, such as minorities and youth, who began to undermine the Anglo infrastructure through social interaction.

The humble beginnings of Los Angeles only further emphasize the uniqueness of the construction of the community. Los Angeles morphed from a pueblo into a major metropolis overnight. In the county of Los Angeles, a population of 101,000 people in 1890 soared to a roaring 2.2 million by 1930 (Villa 37-38). These immigrants were overwhelmingly Anglo, a stark juxtaposition to the previous majority of Mexican-Americans. From the moment of their arrival, this new majority began to create a new community. To understand this new community, one must use a socio-geog...

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...ction of the youth and minority groups will continue to push the social norms, a process that will persist, yielding more and more integrated societies as generations pass.

In many ways, today’s Los Angeles can credit Anglo immigrants of the late 1800s and early 1900s as the driving force behind their communal roots. Their imagined reality of a rural city, the process of creating, leaving and fighting for their neighborhood, have left traces in the city. These traces can be seen in the fragmented infrastructure of Los Angeles. They can be seen in the callous, sometimes violent, social interaction within the community. Yet as youth and minority groups continue to socially interact in increased acceptance, Los Angeles will begin to lose some of its fragmented feel. Each generation will continue to unite Los Angeles through shared social interaction and experiences.
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