LA & SF in the 1030s

April 21st, 2011
Los Angeles in the 1930s: The WPA Guide to the City of Angels (WPA Guides)
San Francisco in the 1930s: The WPA Guide to the City by the Bay (WPA Guides)Maybe it says something about the state of urban history today, but to better understand the history and culture of our two great California cities, San Francisco and Los Angles, we need to go back to the 1930’s and look at two volumes originally produced by the Federal Writers Project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) at the height of the depression. Both truly capture the beauty and authenticity of LA and San Francisco. Add to these volumes an introduction by former SF Chronicle book critic David Kipen and you have far more then just a passing vision of time gone by.  University of California Press has just reissued these two beautiful guides, to Los Angeles and San Francisco in the 1930s. Great photos, great writing and a new introduction by David Kipen.
My conversation with David Kipen: