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Can Boyle Heights Save America?

Can Boyle Heights Save America? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Metzli Garcia/Las Fotos Project.

Moderated by Hector Becerra, City Editor, Los Angeles Times

Boyle Heights may be divided up by L.A. freeways and thoroughfares, but its people have a remarkable record of maintaining solidarity across racial and ethnic lines. What explains the ability of Boyle Heights residents to stick together while constantly integrating immigrants and incorporating newcomers? How has Boyle Heights kept its distinctive identity in the face of social upheaval, political transformation, and waves of gentrification? And what can a more diverse America, and a more globalized world, learn from the history of this magical and multiracial neighborhood in the center of Los Angeles?

Josefina López, author of Real Women Have Curves and Founding Artistic Director of CASA 0101 Theater in Boyle Heights, joins USC professor of American Studies, ethnicity, and history George J. Sanchez, author, most recently, of Boyle Heights: How a Los Angeles Neighborhood Became the Future of American Democracy, at Zócalo to examine whether the neighborhood that birthed him might point the way to a better future for the United States.

Event introduced by Zócalo board member Zev Yaroslavsky, director of the Los Angeles Initiative at UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, and former member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.

The Takeaway

Boyle Heights Is Where Democracy Happens | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Boyle Heights Is Where Democracy Happens

Celebrating a Los Angeles Neighborhood Nexus for New Arrivals, Community Organizing, and Creativity

The Los Angeles neighborhood of Boyle Heights has long demonstrated the resiliency, openness to immigrants, and commitment to democratic action that the United States desperately needs now, said speakers at …