Peter Schrag, a longtime education writer and editor, is the author of Paradise Lost: California's Experience, America's Future and most recently, California: America's High-Stakes Experiment. He is a former editorial page editor of the Sacramento Bee.
People who try to get their arms around California inevitably have trouble. The place is too large, diverse, and complex; it isn't really one place at all, except maybe in the minds of outsiders. So it's not surprising that Made in California: Art, Image, and Identity, 1900-2000, the monumentally ambitious and grandly titled show that runs through February 25 at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), would run into equally monumental difficulties. Even as cultural history, which is what it's intended to be, it struggles.
University of California President Richard C. Atkinson's loud call in February
for abolishing the use of the SAT I test in undergraduate admissions is likely to
have a lot more significance outside the UC system than within.