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AMST 100gm: Los Angeles and the American Dream Professor Mills 10/3/11 Paper Topic: Nina Revoyr,

Southland Due: October 19 during lecture, Times New Roman, 12pt font, Double Space, 5-7pages Suggestion: Begin reading Southland this week

Nina Revoyr's novel Southland makes the case that both the history of blacks, Asians, and Mexicans in Los Angeles and the history of racism in Southern California is interwoven, dynamic, and changeable. The novel often follows our course's themes of sunshine and noir as we are introduced to a series of characters whose lives are caught in a paradox of freedom and restriction, cooperation and conflict, sunshine and noir. Assignment: In keeping with this utopian/dystopian view of Los Angeles, choose two characters of different races, ethnicities, and genders from the novel Southland and compare and contrast their encounter(s) and response(s) to the reality of living in a race-based, or color-based society. (10 points) How does the novel rework or transform the ways in which boosters have packaged and promoted the image of Los Angeles as the site of the American Dream? (10 points) What role does the geographic and political climate of Los Angeles and the U.S. play in shaping race relations in Los Angeles from 1930 to 1994 especially in 1942, 1965, and in 1992? (5 points) How do cultural attitudes about gender roles and interracial sex complicate or assist your characters' ability to achieve the American dream or even their own dreams? (5 points)

30 points total. Please rely only upon the novel and the assigned readings from our course in order to answer each question. This writing assignment will be assessed on the basis of detailed information that you use from the novel to support your analysis of each character as well as creativity. Include a title page, employ a consistent citation format such as MLA, and provide a bibliography. We will adhere rigorously to the university's policies on academic integrity as described in SCampus. Violations through plagiarism in written work will be reported to the Office for Student Conduct.