California Studies Association

The latest news, events, and perspectives from the CSA

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Paiute Indian teen sues school district, 1923 – and wins

This item from CSA Steering Committee member Elaine Elinson:


Elaine Elinson and recent human right exhibition

Alice Piper, a 15-year-old Paiute Indian girl, knocked on the door of the recently built Big Pine Grammar and High School seeking to register for classes.  She and six of her Indian friends were refused admission – denied enrollment because they were Indian.   So they headed to the courthouse where they filed a lawsuit that challenged school segregation in Inyo County – and had an impact all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.  The year was 1923.

Read more about the story and the Exhibit Envoy exhibition here.

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California Studies Dinner Seminar: Peter Richardson on the Grateful Dead, Sept. 19

family-dog-skeleton-roses-i8832Peter Richardson will discuss his forthcoming book on the history of the Grateful Dead at this fall’s first U.C. Berkeley California Studies Dinner Seminar on Thursday, September 19.  Richardson is an editor at UC Press, a lecturer at San Francisco State, and author of books on Carey McWilliams and Ramparts Magazine.  His current work is based on extensive interviews and research at the Grateful Dead Archives at U.C. Santa Cruz. You can read some of Richardson’s thoughts on the Dead, music, and California culture here. The talk will be at the U.C. Center for Labor Research and Education, 2521 Channing Way, Berkeley, 7-9 p.m.  Contact Myra Armstrong to reserve a spot:

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Guerrilla Cartographer Maps Hidden Worlds of Cupcakes, Sex, and Doggy Day Care


The “food swamps” of Los Angeles, and other guerilla maps, can be found in Jensen’s Food Atlas

Story in Wired:

“In his day job as staff cartographer at UC Berkeley, Darin Jensen makes maps for other people. When professors need a map for teaching a class or submitting a research paper to a journal, he’s their man. But his real passion is fostering what he calls guerrilla cartography.

If traditional cartography is slow, methodical, and ethically bound to be free of bias, guerrilla cartography is a rapid and loosely coordinated effort to draw attention to social issues. It’s ‘the act of making a map in the interest of the change that it can inspire or induce,’ Jensen said.”

This is exactly the kind of creative scholarship we love to support through the California Studies Association. [LMC]