How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

What is a multiracial city? Southern California has a growing number of them

Photo by Leslie Berestein Rojas/KPCC

Outside a mini-mall in Alhambra, Calif., October 2010

What is a multiracial city? According to researchers at the University of Southern California, these are cities that "have significant populations of at least two and as many as four major racial groups." And Southern California has loads of them, many more than two decades ago.

A new report out today from USC finds that over the past 20 years throughout the region, the percentage of cities fitting this definition of multiracial has been steadily on the rise.

While just over half the cities in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties could be considered multiracial in 1990, more than 61 percent of the cities in the region are now home to two or more of the major racial groups identified in the study: white, black, Latino and Asian/Pacific Islander.

Some of the highlights:


American snapshot: Christmas in Alhambra

Photo by Leslie Berestein Rojas/KPCC

One of a series of well-decorated front lawns on an Alhambra street, December 23, 2010

Santa flies the Stars and Stripes outside a Latino household in the San Gabriel Valley majority minority city, whose population is about half Asian and a third Latino. Alhambra recently became home to a multilingual community news website in English, Spanish and Mandarin.

Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad, and ????? (and please, Mandarin speakers, correct me if that means something totally different). Happy holidays to all.