Coffee & Conversation: “Public Los Angeles” Book Talk
“Public Los Angeles” is a collection of essays presenting insights into 20th century LA
Public Los Angeles is a collection of unpublished essays by scholar Don Parson, accompanied by a collection of nine essays by friends and mentors, focusing on little-known characters and histories located in the first half of 20th century Los Angeles. An infamously private city in the eyes of outside observers, LA has often been celebrated or caricatured as the epitome of an American society bent on individualism, entrepreneurialism, and market ingenuity. But Parson presents a different vision for the vast Southern California metropolis, one that is deftly illustrated by stories of sustained struggles for social and economic justice led by activists, social workers, architects, housing officials, and a courageous judge.
Public Los Angeles presents insights into LA’s historic collectivism, networks of solidarity, and government policy, helping shape our understanding of public housing, gender and housework, judicial activism, and race and class in modern-day Los Angeles. Please join us for a conversation with the book’s co-editor, Judy Branfman, a filmmaker and researcher at the UCLA Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, along with Elizabeth Blaney and Leonardo Vilchis, co-founders of Union de Vecinos, to discuss the region’s complex social and cultural history, Parson’s legacy, and visions for the future of Los Angeles.