By Eduardo Obregon Pagan
The infamous 1942 "Sleepy Lagoon" homicide trial in la concluded with the conviction of seventeen younger Mexican American males for the alleged gang slaying of fellow early life Jose Diaz. simply 5 months later, the so-called Zoot go well with revolt erupted, as white infantrymen within the urban attacked minority youths and burned their specified zoot fits. Eduardo Obregn Pagan right here offers the 1st accomplished social background of either the trial and the revolt and argues that they resulted from a risky mixture of racial and social tensions that had lengthy been simmering. In reconstructing the lives of the homicide sufferer and people accused of the crime, Pagan contends that neither the convictions (which have been in accordance with little demanding proof) nor the resultant insurrection arose easily from anti-Mexican sentiment. He demonstrates as a substitute number of pre-existing stresses, together with demographic pressures, anxiousness approximately nascent formative years tradition, and the warfare attempt all contributed to the social pressure and the eruption of violence. additionally, he recovers a multidimensional photo of l. a. in the course of international struggle II that comes with the advanced intersections of track, type, violence, race family members, and local activism. Drawing upon neglected facts, Pagan concludes by way of reconstructing the homicide scene and proposes a compelling thought approximately what relatively occurred the evening of the homicide.
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Extra info for Murder at the Sleepy Lagoon: Zoot Suits, Race, and Riot in Wartime L.A.
22 The result of such competing ideas was a tragic irony for racialized minorities in America. 23 Such were the limited possibilities for Mexicans in the American Southwest, as well. Even if they successfully Americanized themselves in dress, belief, and behavior, they could not erase the meaning of their skin within the context of their times, when segregation was the law and deference to whiteness was the custom. The Mexican Vogue A number of circumstances unique to Mexican migration served as cultural counterweights that frustrated the best intentions of the Americanization reformers.
And although Canadians, English, and Italians remained the largest immigrant groups to settle in Los Angeles during the ﬁrst half of the twentieth century, Mexicans were the largest group of racialized nonwhite minorities. Mexicans were classiﬁed as ‘‘white’’ for census purposes, but their reception in Los Angeles was closer to that of African Americans. In addition to immigration from abroad, the internal migration to CaliG E N E A LO G Y O F A C R I S I S Table 2. Foreign-Born White Residents of Los Angeles by Country of Origin, 1900–1940 Canada England Germany a Ireland Italy Mexico Russia a Sweden , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sources: Figures for are from ‘‘Table II—Composition and Characteristics of the Population for Cities of , or More,’’ Thirteenth Census of the United States Taken in the Year , vol.
30 City boosters were not oblivious to the marketing potential of intercultural exchange, and entrepreneurs worked to capitalize on some of it— albeit scrubbed, cleaned, and controlled for middle-class consumption. At key locations in the city, like Olvera Street, investors such as Harry Chandler reworked historic sites to turn cultural tricks for tourists. 31 City boosters, politicians, and planners then redesigned the city plan of Los Angeles to deliver incoming railway passengers directly onto Olvera Street as the oﬃcial welcoming site of Los Angeles.
Murder at the Sleepy Lagoon: Zoot Suits, Race, and Riot in Wartime L.A. by Eduardo Obregon Pagan