Crosstown Collaborators

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The annual crosstown rivalry will kick off Saturday night at 7 p.m. at the Coliseum.  Until then, some Trojans and Bruins have banded together to study the history of Los Angeles.

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The graduate seminar "Studies in Urban History: Los Angeles" brings together students from USC Dornsife and UCLA to examine the rapid development and evolution of metropolitan L.A.

The city, which was a modest crossroads community as recent as about 150 years ago, has catapulted to global influence and significance. That's a fascinating journey to take students through, Bill Deverell said.

"Los Angeles is so interesting because on one hand it seems to defy characterization and invite caricature -- that 'only in L.A.' kind of sentiment and sensibility," he said. "But there's just so much to study here about urban identity, architectural form and experimentation, and the antagonisms of diversity as well as the ways in which this basin has figured out ways to work together."

The course is co-taught by Deverell, professor of history in USC Dornsife and director of the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West (ICW), and Eric Avila, associate professor of history, and Chicano studies and urban planning at UCLA.

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