What defines a city? Is it the physical environment, the history and culture, or the unique mixture of peoples? We’ll try to answer these questions through an intensive two-week exploration of the city. Whether you’re a native or a newcomer, you’ll be learning to look at the urban fabric from multiple perspectives: walking its neighborhoods; hiking through urban parks; trying new foods, and documenting your experiences. We will learn about efforts to restore the LA River; meet with community leaders and council members; and debate “competing visions” of the city. Is LA a metropolis of freeways and cars, or can we remake ourselves as a pedestrian-friendly city with a dense urban core? Our focus may vary depending on student interests, but whatever our final project becomes, you will you will gain experience in observing, researching, and presenting ideas to your classmates.