California Studies Association

The latest news, events, and perspectives from the CSA


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Film showing – Inside the Free Speech Movement

Sunday, March 29 from 3-5:30 pm
Berkeley History Center, 1931 Center Street
Admission free. Donations welcome.

Call 510-848-0181 for reservations. Limited seating.
“Inside the Free Speech Movement,” a video by Linda Rosen and Jai Jai Noire, features BHS oral history interviews with major participants in the Free Speech Movement. It covers civil liberties Regents March, Ron Enfield, photographerand civil rights issues that led up to and were launched by the FSM and how it became so successful.

The Student Rights Movement, which began in Berkeley, spread throughout the United States and the world, influencing the 1968 Paris student uprising and Prague Spring. Berkeley’s anti-Vietnam War protests, which followed on the heels of the FSM, demonstrated how youth could successfully challenge the status quo and emboldened others to follow suit. The Free Speech Movement permanently changed Berkeley and is also pertinent to today’s events.

Featured are Bettina Aptheker, Jack Weinberg, David Lance Goines, Kathleen Piper, Jack Radey, Anita Medal, Prof. Leon Wofsy, Prof. Peter Dale Scott, and others.


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UC Berkeley California Studies Dinner Seminar: Chris Agee, “The Streets of San Francisco: Creation of a Cosmopolitan Liberal Politics, 1950-1972″ March 18, 2015

Chris Agee, Professor of History at University of Colorado, Denver, will discuss his new book, “The Streets of San Francisco,” on Wednesday, March 18 from 7 to 9 p.m. The book covers the police response to diverse ethnic and life style communities in San Francisco during the 1950s and 60s. Agee studies the exercise of police discretion and the contradictory liberal attitudes on police use of force during these decades of social change and political protest. The session will be at the UCB Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, 2521 Channing Way, just east of Telegraph Ave.
Free admission and dinner. RSVP: Myra Armstrong, zulu2@berkeley.edu or 510-643-3012.


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California scholar Gray Brechin to be honored

The Book Club of California has chosen Gray Brechin as the 2015 recipient of their Oscar Lewis Award for outstanding contributions to Western history, largely because of his 2006 Imperial San Francisco. Gray notes, “Oscar Lewis’s books are what got me interested in Western history.” The award will be presented at an event Monday, March 30.

Gray Brechin

Gray Brechin


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UCB California Studies Dinner Seminar, Feb. 19, 2015: Harvey Smith, “Berkeley and the New Deal”

Harvey Smith will discuss his new book, “Berkeley and the New Deal” on Thursday evening, February 19 from 7 to 9 p.m.  Smith is president of the National New Deal Preservation Association and a member of the Living New Deal Project at UC Berkeley.  His book uses Berkeley as a case study for a discussion of the local impact and heritage of the New Deal in an American city.  The session will be at the UCB Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, 2521 Channing Way, just east of Telegraph Ave.

Free admission and dinner.  Contact Myra Armstrong, zulu2@berkeley.edu, 510 643-3012.


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UC Berkeley California Studies Dinner Seminar, January 22, 2015: Chuck Wollenberg, “Save the Bay Part One: The Rise and Fall of the Reber Plan to Destroy San Francisco Bay”

With all due hubris, seminar moderator Chuck Wollenberg has scheduled himself as speaker for the next session. He will discuss the 1940s-50s controversy over John Reber’s plan to turn San Francisco Bay into two fresh water lakes and its connection (or lack thereof) to the Save the Bay movement of the 60s. Wollenberg teaches History at Berkeley City College and is the author of several works, including “Berkeley: a City in History” (UC Press).

The session is on Thursday, Jan. 22, from 7-9 p.m. at the UCB Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, 2521 Channing Way, just east of Telegraph Ave. Free admission and dinner. Contact Myra Armstrong, zulu2@berkeley.edu, 510-643-3012.

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