“Planting Perspectives” The second in the Conversations in Place for 2015 Series

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James P. Folsom, Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo, Laura Pulido, Karen Quintiliani and Claudia Jurmain

L to R (Top Row) – James P. Folsom, Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo, Laura Pulido L to R (Bottom Row) -Karen Quintiliani and Claudia Jurmain

“When I think of home I think of the garden,” wrote Frederick Bixby Jr. to his mother Florence at Rancho Los Alamitos in 1928. That identification of garden and home is true for many Southern Californians. But drought, land use regulations, and rapid urbanization, and labor raise many questions about the situation of homes and their gardens. As Conversations co-moderator Claudia Jurmain points out, “A walk in the garden seems like such a simple, uncomplicated pleasure, but true gardeners, wannabes, and the rest of us, know that in between all those annuals and perennials, succulents and cacti, fruits, herbs and vegetables, including all the native and newcomers, so much more has been planted.”

The second of four Conversations in Place for 2015 will consider the interplay of economics, power and prestige, inequality, access and opportunity, and changing cultural and natural values in the landscapes of Southern California – in private backyards, in grand estates, in public places, and in the kitchen gardens of marginalized immigrants.

The Conversation, moderated by Claudia Jurmain, includes James P. Folsom, the Telleen/Jorgensen Director of the famed 120-acre Huntington Botanical Gardens. An award-winning scholar with international field experience, Folsom was central to the initiative which established the Huntington as a national leader in botanical research and education. He will be joined in conversation by Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo, Professor of Sociology at USC and Associate Director at the Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration. Her recent book, Paradise Transplanted: Migration and the Making of California Gardens, explores how regional gardens came to be a reflection of the world’s people and plants, as well as a mirror of social power, status, and beauty. Also in conversation will be Laura Pulido, Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity at USC whose research focuses on race, environmental justice, Chicana/o Studies, critical human geography, and Los Angeles. Among her many publications is A People’s Guide to Los Angeles. The final panelist will be Karen Quintiliani, Chairman of the Department of Anthropology, California State University Long Beach, and co-founder of the Cambodian Community History and Archive Project. The collaborative Project documents the historical ethnography and contributions of the Cambodians in Long Beach, the largest community outside Southeast Asia.

Now in its fourth year, Conversations in Place 2015 will present two more illuminating explorations of how places are made at Rancho Los Alamitos. The series continues through Sunday, November 8.

Tickets for the Sunday, September 27 Conversations in Place are $25 each. Tickets may be purchased online at rancholosalamitos.org or by calling Rancho Los Alamitos at 562.431.3541.

The Conversations in Place 2105 series is supported by IMPRINT Culture Lab, Michael F. Sfregola and Robert & Marjorie Rivera.

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