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UCLA Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Cover page of Psychological Warfare: Jehovah’s Witnesses and The African American Experience

Psychological Warfare: Jehovah’s Witnesses and The African American Experience


This study explores the psychological warfare Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWs) engage to recruit African Americans as some studies cite membership as high as 52 percent of JWs U.S. membership demographics. Despite succeeding in recruiting more than their “fair share” of African Americans, there has been little research to account for their success. I posit that JWs’ precise understanding and acknowledgment of the African American plight made the organization especially attractive to Black Americans. Utilizing discourse analyses of JWs’ literature 1879 through 2014, I offer three emerging themes that reveal JW’s outreach strategies. 1. A hope offering Black people a racial paradise 2. A strategy corroborating African Americans’ reality of racial oppression and 3. Providing favorable coverage and representation among the Black community.

Cover page of Magnetoelectric Devices and Multiscale Modeling

Magnetoelectric Devices and Multiscale Modeling


Multiferroic materials facilitate the novel development of magnetic devices. Extensive effort has been devoted to the multiferroic field to overcome the scaling limitations in past decades. Likewise, this work focused on increasing energy efficiency and density through the applications, development, and fundamental studies of multiferroics. Application such as cell sorting was proposed to resolve the cell aggregation problem of the conventional method through the permanent magnet. Co/Ni multilayers exhibiting perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) were designed, fabricated, and tested for the cell sorting application. The cell capture method demonstrates a way towards compact lab-on-a-chip devices for more precise cell sorting control. In this study, we observed an inhomogeneous response across these Co/Ni microdevices. This drove us to investigate the roughness and magnetoelectric effects on the magnetic behavior across the microdevices. The homogenous response is critical to reliable strain-mediated multiferroic devices. We fabricated Co/Ni microdisks on the [Pb(Mg1/3Nb2/3)O3]0.7–[PbTiO3]0.3 (PMN-30PT) substrate, and characterized them using magneto-optic Kerr effect (MOKE) method to obtain the coercivity of each individual microdisks. The results were used to study the dependence on roughness and electric field-induced strain in the substrate. This study aimed to assist the reliable design of strain-mediated PMA based devices. Lastly, an atomic model was developed to understand static and dynamic magnetic behaviors using a multiscale modeling approach. Two Co adatoms on a Cu(100) substrate were modeled by incorporating the atomic displacement effects. The parameters used in the model were extracted from the density functional theory (DFT) calculation. Ferromagnetic to antiferromagnetic transition, and in-plane to out-of-plane switching were observed with changes made to the atomic displacement and applied external field. Additionally, the tunability of the resonance frequency of the two-adatom system was demonstrated with the magneto-displacement effect. The outcome shows that the atomic level devices are promising for the potential application of quantum computing and storage devices. When viewed together, the studies provide the foundational tools to develop next-generation multiferroic devices.

Cover page of Legalized Displacement: Analyzing Eviction Apparatuses in Brazil

Legalized Displacement: Analyzing Eviction Apparatuses in Brazil


Brazil is internationally known for having a very progressive legislation and inclusive policieswhen it comes to land and property rights. Despite all the legal mechanisms created by recent legislation to reverse exclusionary patterns of land use, nonetheless, the Brazilian judiciary is ordering the eviction of thousands of marginalized families. In this dissertation I argue that these removals and violations of citizens’ constitutional right to housing must be understood as part of what I call legalized displacement; namely, land dispossession practices that are not only a direct result of real estate speculation, including the financialization of the housing sector, but of a much broader discriminating process, in which the courts are playing a major role. Drawing from Porto Alegre, a city with a participatory planning tradition, this dissertation explores post-millennial eviction apparatuses in Brazil, including the logics, actors, and laws behind displacement both within the formal and informal housing markets. My goal here is to investigate how these removal practices are being validated – especially through urban-legal paradigms and judicial discourses – and contested – particularly in the light of the attempt of democratizing the judicial process with the creation of conciliation courts on collective land conflicts. The questions that guided this dissertation are: 1) how are evictions pursued by the Brazilian judiciary today and how are they contested; 2) how are legal frameworks of land use and property rights being used to justify displacement; and 3) what is the role of conciliation courts, formal spaces of land disputes in Porto Alegre, in challenging collective dispossession. To answer my questions, I employ archival research, spatial and discourse analysis, semi-structured interviews, and participant observation. I find that the courts barely cite paradigmatic urban and land legislations in their rulings, relying instead on specific articles from civil procedure codes, bureaucratically regulating possessory actions. I also conclude that judges are mobilizing political ideologies that condemn alternative tenure models. Finally, my last chapter shows that the new model of justice through conciliation courts does not result in a real redistribution of power and resources, as marginalized groups are still ignored and eventually dehumanized in these mediation hearings.

Cover page of Achieving Enduring Stability in Cabo Delgado: Weighing the US Military Response

Achieving Enduring Stability in Cabo Delgado: Weighing the US Military Response


In Cabo Delgado, the northernmost province of Mozambique, an insurgency has triggered a severe humanitarian crisis. As of today, over 700,000 people have been displaced and close to 4,000 have been killed. The culprit of this violence, a group known as al-Shabab, relies predominately on local frustrations that are the result of decades of political and economic marginalization to mobilize its army. The discovery of natural gas in 2010 exacerbated the already fragile environment in Cabo Delgado by highlighting the extreme poverty of those in the region. In 2018 al-Shabab pledged allegiance to ISIS, which contributed to the international response by providing a justification for foreign intervention. The purpose of this thesis is to evaluate the appropriateness of the current US military response and determine how America can most effectively assist its African partner.

Cover page of Encompassing Boundaries of the Ming and Early Qing Liaodong

Encompassing Boundaries of the Ming and Early Qing Liaodong


This MA thesis examines the border makings in the Liaodong region of northeast China in the mid-15th to the early 16th centuries and the late 17th to the early 18th centuries. I dissect how people on both sides of the borders creatively chose their modes of interaction with the borders, depending on how they understood border(s): as a political technology, an institution, a physical barrier, and/or a cultural demarcation. Chapter 1 explores how the Chosŏn court’s five requests for changing the tribute route extended the borders between Ming Liaodong and Chosŏn Korea. Chapter 2 traces the border relationship of Liaodong in the interactions between Liaodong border officials and Jurchen merchants. Chapter 3 investigates the imaginary border between the Liaodong frontier and China Proper. Chapters 4 and 5 focus on the transformation of the physical and ethnocultural boundaries of Liaodong from the Ming to the early Qing. My research suggests that Liaodong did not follow a linear process from a borderless frontier to a bounded borderland, and that frontier people were able to construct new local boundaries and modify their relationship with their borders.

Cover page of Bridging the Performance Gap Between Mobile Applications and Mobile Web pages

Bridging the Performance Gap Between Mobile Applications and Mobile Web pages


Despite the rapid increase in mobile web traffic, page loads still fall short of user performance expectations. Numerous solutions have attempted to optimize the web performance, however, these state-of-the-art techniques are either ineffective or impractical in real-world settings due to complexity or deployment challenges. Inspired by mobile apps which provide faster user-perceived performance, we target two significant bottlenecks in the page load process; First, clients have to suffer multiple round trips and server processing delays to fetch the page's main HTML; during this time, a browser cannot display any visual content which frustrates users. Next, these pages include large amounts of JavaScript code in order to offer users a dynamic experience. These scripts often make pages slow to load, partly due to a fundamental inefficiency in how browsers process JavaScript content which fails to leverage the multiple CPU cores that are readily available even on low-end phones. We pursue a programmatic approach that works on legacy web pages and unmodified browsers. We built two fully-automatic systems that are complementary to each other and each optimizes one of the above contributors to slow page loads: Fawkes and Horcrux. Fawkes leverages our measurement study finding that 75% of HTML content remains unchanged across page loads spread 1 week apart. With Fawkes, web servers extract static, cacheable HTML templates (e.g., layout templates) for their pages offline. Upon client request, the static template is sent back to the client immediately and is rendered while dynamic content (e.g., news headlines) is generated which expresses the updates required to transform those rendered templates into the latest page versions. Fawkes reduces the startup delays incurred during the fetch of page's HTML and improves interactivity metrics such as Speed Index and Time-to-first-paint by 46% and 64% at the median in warm cache settings; results are 24% and 62% in cold cache settings. Our second system, Horcrux addresses the client-side computation overheads through offline analysis of all the JavaScript code on the server-side to conservatively identify the page state across all loads of the page. Horcrux's JavaScript scheduler then uses this information to judiciously parallelize JavaScript execution on the client-side while ensuring correctness, accounting for the non-determinism intrinsic to web page loads, and the constraints placed by the browser's API for parallelism. Horcrux reduces median browser computation delays by 31-44% and page load times by 18-37%.

Cover page of An Over-Actuated Multi-Rotor Aerial Platform and Iterative Learning Control Applications

An Over-Actuated Multi-Rotor Aerial Platform and Iterative Learning Control Applications


Fully-actuated multi-rotor aerial platforms are receiving increasing research interests for the capability of six degree-of-freedom (DOF) motions such as hovering at non-horizontal attitude angles. Existing fully-actuated aerial vehicles have demonstrated such capability for a limited range of angles and limited thrust efficiencies. This thesis presents an over-actuated aerial platform that achieves maneuvering at arbitrary attitudes with uniformly high thrust efficiency over its achievable configuration space. A novel vectoring thrust force actuator by mounting a regular quad copter on a passive mechanical gimbal mechanism is proposed. The UAV platform achieves full six DOF motion with redundancies from four of these vectoring thrust actuators. We present the hierarchical controller that generates the high level virtual wrench command allocated to each gimbal actuator and the low-level actuator control to track the commanded wrench. And we demonstrate the UAV platform's 6 DOF maneuvers by both simulations and real-world experiments on a prototype we built.

Aerodynamic effects largely affect the performance of aerial vehicles, especially on over-actuated vehicles that could be subject to different airflow configurations. For those aerodynamic effects that are difficult to model but could appear repeatedly, iterative learning control (ILC) has great potential to improve the system performance. This thesis presents the applications of both model-based and data-driven ILC algorithms on the over-actuated aerial platform and shows great improvements against the aerodynamics effects. A formulation is demonstrated to convert the closed-loop dynamics of the over-actuated aerial platform to linear model with six independent control channels. Model-based and data-driven ILC are applied on one or more control channels, and by simulations and real-world experiments, the ILC algorithms are shown to have great improvement and fast convergence rate against a variety of aerodynamic effects.

Cover page of Modernity in Transition: Roberto Arlt’s Aguafuertes porte�as

Modernity in Transition: Roberto Arlt’s Aguafuertes porte�as


Towards the end of the nineteenth century, Argentina becomes a key player in the global market by turning into a major exporter of natural resources. As it secures economic prosperity, the country enters a period of accelerated modernization. Hence, by the first decades of the twentieth century, Argentina will witness the spectacular growth of Buenos Aires, the rapid commercialization of the city, and the drastic increase of its population—with the mass influx of immigrants arriving on its shores. The changes brought about by the country’s transition into modernity contributed to the increasing sociopolitical, socioeconomic and sociocultural tensions that mark this period and were lived out as crises by the porte�os.

In my dissertation, I will study Roberto Arlt’s Aguafuertes porte�as in light of two modern sociocultural crises—national culture and gender relations—and the respective debates emerging during the first decades of the twentieth century about both. I will argue that his aguafuertes point to the rise of an alternative model of literature and gender relations.

The issue of national literature as part of national identity has mostly been examined through the works of the martinfierristas; however, Arlt’s intervention in the debate via his aguafuertes is gaining critical attention. Critics have mainly focused on his use and defense of spoken language, but also on his alternative representation of Buenos Aires and the porte�os to underscore how he combats cultural nationalist ideologies. In the process, they have contributed to our understanding of the modern qualities of his writing. However, in my present work, I propose that against the backdrop of this debate, Arlt formulates a modern theory of national literature: national literature is that which is read (purchased) by its people. By conceptualizing literature in terms of a relationship with its readers, Arlt points to culture’s entrance onto the marketplace and its impact on the value and function of literature. Aside from his foreword to Los lanzallamas, which is widely read as his literary manifesto, Arlt did not write a literary manifesto per se. Yet a close reading of his aguafuertes that deal with the question of what is national literature allows us to reconstruct his proposed modern concept of literature, previously unexplored, which I define in chapter 2.

Critics have already observed that Arlt systematically dedicates three months to the subject of marriage and courtship and that he is critical of traditional gender relations. Yet by highlighting his critical treatment of women, they have tended to minimize the position of the author vis-�-vis the conservative sector on the issue of gender relations. However, by reading these aguafuertes in light of the sociocultural transformations set in motion by Argentina’s transition into modernity and the discourses proliferating on family, love and sex, I argue that in contrast to the leading intellectuals, statesmen and public health physicians who defend the traditional gender relations paradigm by singling out women’s entrance onto the public sphere as the source of the current crisis of the family and nation, Arlt calls for its revision by portraying the crisis as a conflict between the established and an alternative gender relations emerging during this period, which I call modern love and is subject of many of his aguafuertes. I also address Arlt’s contradictory position on women—where he simultaneously targets women for the crisis and advocates for the liberalization of women—and question critics’ commonly held assumption that he is misogynist. Signaling the impact that Argentina’s transition into modernity was having on everyday practices and the concept of gender relations, the street of Buenos Aires turns into a stage of modern love. Inspired by Walter Benjamin’s and Marshall Berman’s interpretation of Baudelaire’s poetry, I examine the seemingly clich� imageries associated with modern love registered in his aguafuertes as well as in his novels—sudden (dis)encounter and public display of affection—and propose that the street was not merely a stage but also a catalyst of modern love.

Cover page of Scaling the Nation: Local Literary Production and National Literature in Postwar Japan, 1946-1955

Scaling the Nation: Local Literary Production and National Literature in Postwar Japan, 1946-1955


This dissertation reintegrates the print culture of northern Tōhoku from the first decade of Japan’s postwar period into our understanding of postwar literary history. To date, urban print culture has been scaled to a conceptual space congruent with the postwar Japanese “nation,” obscuring the breadth and complexity of postwar print production. The postwar period witnessed an unprecedented boom in magazine publishing, one that was driven by independently produced non-urban texts. This dissertation deploys an archival methodology that reads postwar print in the aggregate, without concern for scalar modes of assessing literary value derived from circulation, distribution, or readership. Doing so reveals a participatory print culture aimed at decentralizing capital-centric literary production and incorporating democratic revolution within the space and labor of local publishing. Chapter 1 establishes three critical approaches that will guide the dissertation: scale, archivization, and concept-work. Scalar methodologies show the postwar Debate on National Literature (kokumin bungaku ronsō) as not purely a hypothetical intellectual debate but a reaction to developments in independent rural print. Chapter 2 reads Occupation censorship documents held in the Prange Collection against the holdings of northern Tōhoku libraries, showing how post-censorship was more widespread and less effective than previously understood. Chapter 3 critiques the intersection of gender and locality, showing how rural women have been excised from literary history. The chapter challenges the gendered reading and archival practices that develop from urban print capital, arguing instead for critical approaches founded in class, gender, and environment. Chapter 4 addresses the category of “Farmers’ Literature” (nōmin bungaku), arguing that the writers active in northern Japan had little concern for a national literary movement. Instead, they advocated for a re-localizing of both print culture and democratic politics. Chapter 5 imagines how Occupation censorship of local magazines can also impact “larger” scales, like world literature. Deliberately reading Occupation censorship archives as world literature rewrites the criteria by which translations come to be thought of as literature.

Cover page of Community College Foundations: Increasing Philanthropic Success

Community College Foundations: Increasing Philanthropic Success



Community College Foundations: Increasing Philanthropic Success


Bridget Frances RazoDoctor of Education University of California, Los Angeles, 2022 Professor Robert Cooper, Chair

Community colleges educate nearly 50% of students who complete a degree at a four-year university. Yet, California community college funding remains lower than per student funding for the UC, CSU, and K-12 systems. Community college non-profit 501(c)3 foundations provide the opportunity to generate millions in support of their colleges, and yet they remain the least understood and largely underfunded entity across California community colleges. This research examines the California community college fundraising efforts, identifying challenges and opportunities for success. Using case study methodology, surveys were sent to 114 California community college executive directors to identify the current status of community college foundations in order to narrow down the choices for the case study interviews. From the survey responses and further website research, three colleges were selected for the case studies. Selection was based on regional location, foundation model in relation to the college, and revenue generated over five years based on survey responses. Three colleges participated in interviews with their foundation executive directors, superintendent/presidents, and foundation board of directors presidents. The responses provided confirmation of existing research, extended information on others, and some significant contradictions regarding presumed funding models and operations. It is hoped that this research will reframe the approach to California community college philanthropy efforts, reexamine the role and expectation of management structures and community interactions, and, in the aggregate, will provide support to greatly increase the level of philanthropy for the underfunded community colleges.