Chavez Ravine: A Los Angeles Story

The Johnson chapter on spatial entitlement described how neighborhoods have been destroyed and reorganized to support racial hierarchies. Included is the story of the displacement of the Chavez Ravine community in Los Angeles in the early 1950s.  Chavez Ravine was a “self-sufficient” Mexican-American community.  However, over seven thousand families were removed from their houses through the power of eminent domain and the Federal Housing Act of 1949.  Many residents resisted but  were forced out by LAPD.  According to Johnson, houses were set on fire by the fire department.  By 1952, the Chavez Ravine community was destroyed and described as a ghost town. The area was later used to build Dodger Stadium. PBS did a documentary on the history of Chavez Ravine.  It “[tells] story of how this Mexican American community was destroyed by greed, political hypocrisy and good intentions gone awry.” Here is the link: http://www.pbs.org/independentlens/chavezravine/cr.html

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