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My first book, The Sand Rush: An Environmental History of Los Angeles’s Beaches (2020), recounts the formidable beach modernization campaign that transformed Los Angeles into one of the world’s greatest coastal metropolises, revealing how the city’s man-made shores served as a central locus for the reinvention of seaside leisure and the triumph of modern bodies. Integrating environmental, cultural, and social history, The Sand Rush not only uncovers how the Los Angeles coastline was constructed, but also how this major planning and engineering project affected the lives of ordinary city-dwellers and their relationship to nature. You can read a review published in Le Monde here, and a review in English here. The English version of the book is under contract with Oxford University Press. 

In parallel to my work on American coastlines, I have explored the history of the body, beauty, nudity, and muscularity. I have published several articles on these topics, including “The Life, Death, and Rebirth of Muscle Beach: Reassessing the Muscular Physique in Postwar America, 1940s-1980s” (Southern California Quarterly)  which was awarded the 2019 Doyce B. Nunis, Jr. Award by the Historical Society of Southern California. 

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • In Practice: Teaching Environmental American Studies in a Time of Crisis: Decarbonizing the US History Survey: The Case of “Postwar Affluence”, Quinn, E., Devienne, E., Roane, J., Young, A., Okoth, C., Wills, J., Henderson, F. Dec 2021, In: Journal of American Studies
  • Places and Cultures of Capitalism: Histories from the Grassroots, Devienne, E., Diamond , A. 22 Mar 2021, In: Transatlantica
  • La ruée vers le sable. Une histoire environnementale des plages de Los Angeles au XXe siècle, Devienne, E. 5 Mar 2020
  • La ruée vers le sable : Une histoire environnementale du littoral de Los Angeles au XXe siècle, Devienne, E. 2020
  • Spectacular Bodies: Los Angeles Beach Cultures and the Making of the “California Look” (1900s-1960s), Devienne, E. Dec 2019, In: European Journal of American Studies
  • Urban Renewal by the Sea: Reinventing the Beach for the Suburban Age in Postwar Los Angeles, Devienne, E. 1 Jan 2019, In: Journal of Urban History
  • The Life, Death, and Rebirth of Muscle Beach: Reassessing the Muscular Physique in Postwar America, 1940s–1980s, Devienne, E. 2018, In: Southern California quarterly
  • « Il y a des lois sur la plage ! »: Régulation et surveillance des comportements sur les plages de Los Angeles, années 1910-1970, Devienne, E. 2017, In: Actes de la Recherche en Sciences Sociales
  • Plages de la discorde, Bidet, J., Devienne, E. 2017, In: Actes de la Recherche en Sciences Sociales

  • History PhD
  • History MA

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