My research focuses on the connections between spatial justice and civic memory in San Francisco from the 1940s through the 1980s in order to tell a longer history of reverse white flight in American cities. My dissertation focuses on the transition to tourism and white collar economies, the effects of urban redevelopment and gentrification, contests over high rise and freeway construction, and the institutionalization of historic preservation and urban design planning. Finally, I attempt to tie these changes to a new lucrative, historically-themed civic identity invented for San Francisco during the post-war decades.
I am very interested in using oral history to understand the personal stories behind bureaucratic decision making and have just concluded a nearly two year long project recording the voices of people involved at all levels with the San Francisco Planning Department over the past fifty years.
I also Tweet about San Francisco @DevinMcCutchen
Fields of Study
20th Century US, California, Western US, Urban, Planning, Cultural, Oral History, Public History
- Oral History:
- San Francisco Planing Department Oral History Project, funded by San Francisco Planning Department, 2014-16.
- Mission Street Oral History Project, funded by the San Francisco Planning Department and archived at Acción Latina, conducted as part of the Mission Street Public Life Plan, 2015.
- Public History:
- Author, "Mission Street History" section of the Mission Street Public Life Plan, San Francisco Planning Department, 2015.
- Curatorial team member, "Think California" exhibit, California Historical Society, San Francisco, opened September 25, 2009.
- Digital Publications:
- "Lessons from #NotAllMen / #YesAllWomen", The Good Men Project, June 8, 2014.
- Quilting Wilshire Project collection, UCLA Urban Humanities Summer Institute, Los Angeles, September, 2013.
- "The 49ers Might Have Hated Techies, Too", San Francisco Magazine, June 28, 2013.
- Contributor, Arsenal: A Digital Humanities Rolodex, project attributed to Miriam Posner and UCLA Center for Digital Humanities 201 Class, 2012.
- "A Family History at North Beach's Gold Spike", Untapped Cities, November 3, 2011.
- Media Mentions:
- Carolina A. Miranda, "A gag quiz from 1985 says a lot about how we talk about gentrification," Los Angeles Times, August 18, 2014.
- John Metcalfe, "Take a San Francisco Gentrification Quiz from 1985," Citylab, The Atlantic, August 18, 2014.
- Jonathan Kauffman, "How gentrified is your neighborhood (circa 1985)?," Inside Scoop SF, SF Gate, San Francisco Chronicle, August 18, 2014.
- Jennifer Maerz, "This Is How You Know Your Neighborhood Gentrified," The Bold Italic, August 18, 2014.
Grants and Awards
- UCLA Library Robert B. and Blanch Campbell Student Book Collection Competition, First Place Graduate Prize for the collection, "Romantic San Francisco: Urban Image-Making from 1906-1971." 2014.
- UCLA Graduate Summer Research Mentorship Program in the Humanities & Social Sciences. 2012.
- UCLA Library Robert B. and Blanche Campbell Student Book Collection Competition, First Place Graduate Prize for the collection, "Imagined California: A Pastiche of Places." 2011.
- Talks and Lectures:
- "San Francisco's Post-Modern Urbanism," "Horizontalism" advanced BArch studio class, Profs. Antje Steinmuller and Christopher Roach, California College of the Arts, San Francisco, September 4, 2015.
- "An Evening of Movie Clips of the Treasure Island World's Fair of 1939 (The Golden Gate International Exposition)" The Art Deco Society of California, San Francisco, March 27, 2014.
- "Feel-Good Stories About Ugly Complexities: The Mexican-War and California Statehood," History 13B: History of the US and Its Colonial Origins-19th Century, Prof. Ellen DuBois, UCLA, Winter 2013.
- "Conquistadors, Pioneers and Librarians: The Intellectual World of the Zamorano Club and Southern California's Bibliophilic Elites of the 30s and 40s", Mission San Gabriel History Forum, San Gabriel, October 6, 2012.
- "In the Quiet of the Hillside I Heard Voices Inaudible in the Noisy City: Reading Dana W. Bartlett's Los Angeles Environmental Ideology Through to The Bush Aflame", UCLA History Graduate Students Association Conference, Los Angles, October 8, 2011.
- Co-author, Freed, et. al, "Musical Applications and Design Techniques for the Gametrak Tethered Spatial Position Controller," Proceedings of the 6th Sound and Music Computing Conference, SMC 2009. Sound and music Computing network, 2009. p. 189-194.
- Community Service:
- Founding Board Member, Emperor's Bridge Campaign, San Francisco, 2014-Present.
- Volunteer, Anti-Eviction Mapping Project's Narratives of Displacement oral history project, San Francisco, 2013-14.
- Youth mentor, "SoHDA History Day" project, School of History and Dramatic Arts at Los Angeles Unified School District's Sonia Sotomayor Learning Academies, UCLA History Department's Public History Initiative, Los Angeles, 2012-2013.
- C.Phil. U.S. History. University of California, Los Angeles. 2013.
- M.A. U.S. History. University of California, Los Angeles. 2012.
- B.A. History Major and Music Minor. University of California, Berkeley. 2008.