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Berkeley Talks

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Berkeley Talks is a Berkeley News podcast that features full-length lectures and conversations at UC Berkeley. It's managed by UC Berkeley's Office of Communications and Public Affairs.
74 Episodes
On Jan. 23, 2020, Jemele Hill, a staff writer for the Atlantic and host of the podcast Jemele Hill is Unbothered, spoke at UC Berkeley's Cal Performances about her career at the intersection of sports, race and culture in the U.S. In conversation with with KALW's radio host and reporter, Hana Baba, Hill touched on the NFL and Colin Kaepernick, what it's like reporting on sports as a black woman and how her life changed after President Trump tweeted about her."I mean, the NFL owners are spineless," Hill told Baba. "And I knew Colin Kaepernick would never play in the NFL the moment Donald Trump said his name... One of the few things that a lot of people unfortunately agree with the president about is that Colin Kaepernick should not be taking a knee. So, he [Trump] knows every time he says his [Kaepernick's] name, that it is giving him a level of universal support ... that he's doesn't experience usually."And so, what does that say about people in this country? I'm also old enough to remember that we just celebrated Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, commemorated him. And the same people I saw talking about how great Dr. King was for his nonviolent protest, are also the same people who think Colin Kaepernick doesn't deserve to play in the NFL? ... But the NFL, as we have seen in the case with Muhammad Ali, as we have seen the case in a lot of history, 20 years from now, they'll be telling a different story. They'll act like all of this never happened."Read the transcript and listen to the conversation on Berkeley News.
In this episode of Who Belongs?, a podcast by UC Berkeley's Othering and Belonging Institute, Berkeley professors Denise Herd and Waldo Martin discuss 400 Years of Resistance to Slavery and Injustice, a yearlong initiative that marks the 400th anniversary of the forced arrival of enslaved Africans in the English colonies."The commemoration of the 400th anniversary of slavery — it's part of a national initiative to recognize this long and really, really important time in our history," says Herd, a professor in the School of Public Health and associate director of the Othering and Belonging Institute who is leading the campus initiative. "... I think a strong impetus for bringing it here was that it resonates with the goals of really understanding social inequality and addressing social inequality."Listen to the talk and read the transcript on Berkeley News.
Harry Chotiner, a film historian and an adjunct assistant professor at New York University, gave a lecture on Jan. 22, 2019, about film in the past year, from Hollywood blockbusters and indie favorites to the impact of the #MeToo movement, changes in the film academy and the Oscars. The lecture was part of a series of talks sponsored by UC Berkeley's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI)."The two things that I think are most importantly new are streaming and the #MeToo movement, and that's what I want to focus on," says Chotiner. "In terms of streaming, I would say we're sort of in the middle of the beginning of the streaming revolution. ... Streaming is the biggest threat to movie theaters since television came in in the 1950s. Last year, Netflix spent more money making movies than all the studios combined. That's stunning. That's shocking."As for the #MeToo movement, he says it has created more gender and racial equality and inclusion, as well as safer working environments, in the film industry. But, he adds, there is still work to be done."By any measurable standard, sexual harassment has dropped drastically, and it's not just measurable standards, but impressionistic accounts," he says. "The experience of women working is drastically better. Doesn't mean it's all done and it's all great. It does mean #MeToo has rocked the entire studio system."See Chotiner's list of the best films of 2019. Listen to the talk and read the transcript on Berkeley News.
"People say, 'Oh no, the institutions in the United States can support anything. We are safe.' No, beware. Nothing is safe. Nothing is forever. Everything can change. We have to be aware of that and be therefore very alert. I wouldn't say vigilant because the word vigilant has a double meaning, but alert."That's Chilean author Isabel Allende in conversation with playwright Caridad Svich, who won a 2011 American Theatre Critics Association Primus Prize for her adaptation of Allende's 1982 novel, The House of the Spirits. The play, presented by UC Berkeley's Department of Theater, Dance and Performance Studies in spring 2019, tells the story of a family that spans three generations and a century of violent change in an unnamed Latin American country.The conversation, part of Berkeley Arts and Design's public lecture series, was held on April 25, 2019, at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA). It was moderated by Michael Moran, who directed the Berkeley production.During the talk, Allende discussed how she grew up in Chile, where she and her family lived through the 1973 military coup, then fled to Venezuela as refugees. While living in Venezuela, Allende felt sick with nostalgia for her country and the family she left behind. And she was also in pain knowing that people — her friends and family — were dying in Chile. Writing, she says, helped her process her grief and begin to heal.Read the transcript and listen on Berkeley News.
The United States now locks up more people than almost any country in the history of the world, and by virtually any measure, prisons have not worked, said Paul Butler, a law professor at Georgetown University, during a UC Berkeley lecture in October. Instead, Butler advocates abolishing prisons and finding alternative ways to deal with those who cause harm — something that he says would create a safer, more just society."Prison has been a miserable failure," said Butler, also a legal analyst on MSNBC. "It doesn't work. Most young people who come home from prison wind up right back there within two years. Prisons themselves are horrible places. They're violent, they stink, they're dangerous, they're noisy. It's really hard to leave a space like that better than when you came in."Butler, author of the 2017 book Chokehold: Policing Black Men, gave a talk called "Prison Abolition, and a Mule" on Oct. 16, 2019, as part of UC Berkeley's Jefferson Memorial Lectures, sponsored by the Graduate Division. It was also part of the campus's yearlong initiative, 400 Years of Resistance to Slavery and Injustice, commemorating the 400th anniversary of the forced arrival of enslaved Africans in the English colonies.Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.
"The purpose of medicine is to create a bigger, deeper, more thorough experience of our inner functioning, our physical functioning, our emotional functioning, our energetic functioning, our spiritual functioning, our relational functioning, how we are with the land," said author and consciousness guide Françoise Bourzat. "... Mushrooms bring it to your face, like, 'This is your illness.' By knowing your illness, you resolve your illness, you deal with it, you treat it from within yourself. The mushroom helps you see the truth." Bourzat, author of Consciousness Medicine, gave a talk on Nov. 14 at UC Berkeley's Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology, alongside an exhibit, Pleasure, Poison, Prescription and Prayer: The Worlds of Mind-Altering Substances, which ran from March 15 to Dec. 15. Bourzat, a counselor who is trained in somatic psychology, has been mentored in the Mexican Mazatec tradition of the sacred mushrooms, and has been sharing her approach internationally for 30 years.Read the transcript on Berkeley News.
On Oct. 29, artist Paul Chan delivered the 2019-20 Una's Lecture, a series sponsored by the Townsend Center for the Humanities since 1987. In his talk, called the "Bather's Dilemma," Chan explores the figure of the bather — a visual trope with a rich history, and a prominent theme in his own work — as an embodiment of pleasure that is linked to the act of renewal."The bather in art history has a long and storied pedigree," says Chan. "What I was interested in was how this motif inspired a few artists to experiment with new ways to depict a human form that took into account movement in different ways."Thinking about bathers touched a nerve that was sensitive to a need I didn't realize was in me," he continues. "I needed some way to think about whether pleasure has a place in these punishing times and whether our capacity for pleasing and being pleased has any bearing on how we renew ourselves to better meet what genuine appeals of progress asks of us."Chan is the winner of the 2014 Hugo Boss Prize, awarded by the Guggenheim Foundation to an artist who has made a visionary contribution to contemporary art. His art is held in numerous permanent collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Art Institute of Chicago.Listen and read the transcript on Berkeley News.
"If rights aren't enforced, do they really exist?" asks Beverly Crawford, a professor emerita of political science and international and area studies at UC Berkeley. "We can say, 'Yes, they exist,' but if they're not enforced, people can be treated as if their rights don't exist ... Once a person steps outside their own borders, let's say they're fleeing persecution, or they're fleeing poverty, or they're fleeing environmental crisis or disaster, they are rightless, as if their rights don't exist."Crawford, former director of Berkeley's Center for European and German Studies, gave a lecture, "Lies about migrants: immigration policy in a time of post-truth politics," on Oct. 16, 2019, as part of a series of talks sponsored by UC Berkeley's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI). During the lecture, she discussed two problems in formulating immigration policy that leads to dehumanization — the absence of migrant rights and rival national identities. For example, in the U.S., there are rival definitions of what it means to be an American for American citizens. But, she says, it happens in other countries, too."What we have seen is the rise of the extreme right wing to dominate the narrative about immigration, both in the United States and in Europe," Crawford continues. "What's happened is, this extreme right, which dominates the narrative, has created a false narrative, and has turned to the weaponization of dehumanizing words and pictures to control the narrative based on people's fear and emotion, and the formulation of an exclusionist immigration policy. We don't have a comprehensive immigration law now."Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.
At 13, Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote an article in her school paper about the importance of the Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence. But she didn't think about pursuing a career in law because she didn't see any women in the field.When she began college at Cornell, however, she learned about how attorneys were defending people called in for questioning during the wave of Communist accusations led by Senator Joe McCarthy. In reading about their advocacy, "I got the idea that being a lawyer was a pretty nifty thing," said Ginsburg at an Oct. 21 event at UC Berkeley.Ginsburg, who, at 86, is the oldest U.S. Supreme Court Justice, gave Berkeley Law’s inaugural Herma Hill Kay Memorial Lecture to a packed house of Berkeley Law students, faculty and staff in Zellberbach Hall.Ginsburg and Kay, who both graduated from law school in 1959, were trailblazers for women in the law and gender equality. They met at a conference on women in the law in 1971, and went on to co-author the first casebook on sex-based discrimination. They were good friends for decades before Kay, who taught for 57 years at Berkeley Law and was its first woman dean, died in 2017.During the lecture, Ginsburg talks about the challenges she faced as a woman in a male-dominated field, how "overjoyed" she is that women are now welcomed at the bar and on the bench, how unconscious bias is still a problem — and the "zest for life" she has after having survived several bouts of cancer.Read a transcript and listen on Berkeley News.
With the 2020 general elections looming, the nominee for the Democratic Party undetermined and a defiant and volatile president at the helm, the impeachment inquiry is heating up. At stake in this topsy-turvy political theater are our democratic institutions, which may be forever altered.In this Nov. 5 talk for UC Berkeley's Social Science Matrix event, Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of Berkeley Law, and Robert Reich, a professor of public policy at UC Berkeley's Goldman School of Public Policy, discuss what the mechanisms are for removing or sanctioning a president of the United States, what are impeachable offenses and how it's no longer about left vs. right, but democracy vs. oligarchy. ( photo)Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.
Growing up in an immigrant family, comedian Maz Jobrani knew his parents wanted him to be a lawyer or doctor, maybe an engineer. When he became a comedian, he says, the whole community was sad for the family. "They were like, 'Did you hear about Jobrani's son? Yeah, it's a shame. He's almost a drug dealer."Jobrani was recently a guest on the Science of Happiness, a podcast from the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley. In his episode, called "Notice the Good in Your Life," Jobrani talks with host Dacher Keltner, a psychology professor and co-director of the Greater Good Science Center, about his 2017 stand-up special on Netflix, Immigrant."The reason I called my recent special Immigrant was because “immigrant” under Trump had turned into a bad word. It was a derogatory term. And really, people that that grasped onto that xenophobia, it broke my heart because I look around — first of all, I’m an immigrant. And then I look around and I know a lot of really good people that are immigrants, and then I’m looking at people like the Syrian refugees who are trying to come to America and flee hardship or the people come from Central America and I go, 'These people are leaving a really bad situation.' No one’s in a great situation is going, 'Oh we know the economy is great, there’s no violence in our country — let’s go somewhere where we don’t speak the language and we’re not wanted and see how it will go.’ No.""That’s so true, Maz," says Keltner. "You know, what really strikes me about the immigrants who I am friends with and who I work with is not only their perseverance, but their ability to stay focused on the brighter side of human nature in spite of the rise of white supremacy and xenophobia in our country today."In each episode of the Science of Happiness, a guest chooses a practice from the Science of Happiness free online course that’s been shown to increase happiness, connection and kindness. Jobrani chose a practice that focused on positivity — writing about three good things. When Jobrani got the assignment, he was on vacation with his wife and two kids in Japan, so the whole family participated. Each day, they would take 10 minutes to write down three good things, then they'd read what they wrote aloud to each other. It's something that Jobrani says encouraged them to look for positive things throughout the day.Listen and read the transcript on Berkeley News.
An important case of the current U.S. Supreme Court term is about Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA — a program that some 700,000 undocumented people depend on for the right to work and protection from deportation — and whether or not it was properly ended by the Trump administration in 2017. The program has been kept in place since then by federal court injunctions. The Supreme Court heard argument in these cases on Nov. 12. Berkeley Law Dean Erwin Chemerinsky and attorney Ethan Dettmer of Gibson, Dunn and Crutcher's in San Francisco are key members of the litigation team that won one of the court injunctions, and are currently defending the program in the Supreme Court. In this Nov. 18 talk, they discuss what it's like litigating a case like this and the Supreme Court arguments that happened last week.Related Berkeley News content:How one DACA student found his community — and voice — at BerkeleyFor DACA academic counselor, it’s about helping all undocumented studentsListen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.
Nadine Burke Harris, named the first surgeon general of California in January, has seen how childhood stress and trauma leads to declining health in adulthood. She began studying the correlation as a pediatrician years ago, and continued her research as medical director of the Bayview Child Health Center in San Francisco and founder of the Center for Youth Wellness."I believe, fundamentally, that social determinants of health are to the 21st century what infectious disease was to the 20th century," Harris told Berkeley Public Health Dean Michael Lu during the school's Dean's Speaker Series event on Sept. 26.As surgeon general, Harris is leading the state's efforts to implement routine screening for Adverse Childhood Experiences, known as ACEs, among California's Medicaid population.ACEs, explained Harris, are experiences — abuse, homelessness, losing a caregiver — that lead to health issues later in life, including heart disease, cancer and diabetes. The more ACEs a person has, she said, the more at risk they are."When we recognize that childhood adversity is a common root cause," she said, "it gives us really powerful insight into some of the most urgent issues of our day, specifically when we understand that cumulative adversity has an impact on our stress response system. And that impacts our later risk of heart disease. It helps us understand that when a black boy is walking down the street and get stopped, the more times it is activated, the greater the risk to the youth."Harris ended her talk with her goal and a call to action: "In my role as state surgeon general, it’s my intention to lay the infrastructure to ensure that, in the state of California, we will cut ACEs in half in one generation. And y’all are going to help me with that.”Read a transcript and listen on Berkeley News.
People across the country, from presidential hopefuls and engaged voters to journalists and activists, are grappling with how to think and talk about racism in American politics.In this Oct. 11 talk, Berkeley Law professor Ian Haney López, one of the nation's leading thinkers on how racism has evolved in the U.S. since the civil rights era, discusses his new book, Merge Left: Fusing Race and Class, Winning Elections and Saving America, offering insight and hopeful new strategy for defeating the right's racial fearmongering and achieving bold progressive goals."... Republicans have been saying for 50 years, 'Democrats only care about people of color.' And now, whenever folks hear a conversation about race, about racial justice, they immediately default to a frame, 'This is racial justice? That's for people of color.' We need to say expressly, 'Racial justice? That's for white folks, too.'"Whites need to hear that they will benefit from being part of a multiracial coalition ... When we tested this message with communities of color, they had far more confidence in a multiracial coalition when we said, 'Whites will benefit,' because that told people of color, 'Oh, this isn't just kumbaya and we're all going to do this because we should.' This is, 'White folks need to save their families, and to save their families, they've got to work with us.' And once they know that, people of color say, 'Yes, this might work. This might work.'"This talk was organized as part of a series of events under the banner of the 400 Years of Resistance to Slavery and Injustice initiative, UC Berkeley’s yearlong commemoration marking the anniversary of the forced arrival of Africans in the English colonies in 1619. The initiative was launched in the spirit of the 400 Years of African American History Commission Act, federal legislation signed last year that acknowledged the impact of slavery in the United States and called for a national commission to help support events around the country to commemorate the anniversary.Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.Learn about upcoming 400 Years events on the Haas Institute's website.
To write his new book, ANTISOCIAL: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians and the Hijacking of the American Conversation, New Yorker reporter Andrew Marantz spent three years embedded with alt-right trolls to better understand how they had become powerful enough to influence our politics, our media — our society as a whole.“I suppose I could have sat around and simply had an opinion, but I really wanted to know where these toxic ideas were coming from, what motivates people to do this and how they were promoting these ideas,” Marantz told Berkeley News earlier this month.Marantz joined Chancellor Carol Christ, Ed Wasserman, dean of the Graduate School of Journalism, and moderator Dan Mogulof, at UC Berkeley’s Alumni House on Oct. 16 to discuss the trends and discoveries described in his book.“The thing that surprised me about the book is how nihilistic and punk and really without convictions … a lot of these people were,” said Chancellor Christ said to Marantz during the discussion. “They were really basically driven by a desire for followers and notoriety rather than the horrible convictions that they said. Was that your take on it? Because that’s certainly what I took from the book. And that was actually as troubling to me as the virus of these hate sites.”“Yeah, I think you’re right,” said Marantz. “There’s a spectrum in the book from sincere ideologues to, as you say, nihilists, who don’t really seem to have any ideological agenda, but seem to have just a pure self-interest. Or, even self-interest is maybe generous, because all they want is attention. But it can be negative attention. It doesn’t really seem to matter to them. So, both of those areas existed within the taxonomy. And I agree, it’s hard to see which one is worse. Because, say what you will about the tenets of National Socialism — at least it’s an ethos. You can work with an ideology, it’s hard to know how to work with a nihilist.”Christ first met Marantz in 2017, when he was working on a New Yorker story about free speech issues on campus, after the cancellation of an event with then-Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos led to a wave of criticism that Berkeley — home of the Free Speech Movement — had tried to shut down free speech.“When I was here covering the Milo circus,” said Marantz, “the underlying premise was, ‘This is a public university, therefore, the First Amendment applies, therefore, he has to be able to speak.’ …What I’m questioning is whether that should be the interpretation of First Amendment law for time immemorial, or whether we can change our interpretations of laws just like we’ve always changed our interpretations of laws.”Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.
In this talk, renowned biologist and naturalist E.O. Wilson joins former U.S. secretary of the interior and interim CEO of the Nature Conservancy Sally Jewell for a discussion about the core science and common humanity that is driving the success of Wilson's Half-Earth Project — "a call to protect half the land and sea in order to manage sufficient habitat to reverse the species extinction crisis and ensure the longterm health of our planet." It's made up of a team of thought leaders from a wide range of fields who are gathering expertise from around the world to achieve this goal."We need to build a science," says Wilson. "We know that our ecosystems, which are really what we try to protect — not just single species, but ensembles of species that have come together and have reached stability, sometimes over thousands, or in some places, millions of years ... We need an ecosystems science. And there is going to be one created. It should be, has to be, in the immediate future. So since I'm in a preacher's mood, I will say to you: If you want to go into science, please consider going into the coming development of a new biological science."E.O. Wilson spoke on Oct. 7, 2019, as part of the College of Natural Resources' Horace M. Albright Lecture in Conservation. It took place during the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation's Half-Earth Day, an annual event that explores how conservationists can make progress toward protecting half the earth for the rest of life. Half-Earth Day was held at UC Berkeley this year, and featured lectures, panels and workshops on education and citizen science, science and technology, conservation and community, and business and sustainability.Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.
The unrivaled political insight of reporter Maggie Haberman makes her one of today’s most influential voices in national affairs journalism. In this talk, the New York Times Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist offers a riveting look into the Trump White House, the current political waters and the changing perceptions of journalism across the country."What Trump does with that language, which comes with a real degree of danger, in part for the obvious, but in part because his fans don’t realize that some of this is a game for him, and how much he truly has fed off of and enjoys the mainstream media attention," says Haberman. "He still brags to his friends that he’s on the front page of the Times more now than he ever was before he was elected. They have told me they detect a note of pride in his voice. Not everything that Trump is doing is new or something unseen before in U.S. presidential politics, including his attempts to influence how the press does its job. Reporters cannot lose sight of that. He is extreme, but aspects of what he does are not unique."Haberman spoke at Zellerbach Hall on Sunday, Oct. 6, as part of Cal Performances’ 2019–20 Speaker Series, a season-long series of public presentations by some of the leading creative and intellectual voices of our time including David Sedaris, Dan Pfeiffer, David Pogue, Jemele Hill, Laverne Cox and Jad Abumrad — thinkers, activists, strategists, satirists, journalists and pioneers at the leading edge of culture and politics.Maggie Haberman covered New York City Hall for the New York Daily News, the 2008 U.S. Presidential campaign and other political races for the New York Post, and wrote about national affairs as a senior reporter for Politico. She and her team at the New York Times received the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for their coverage of the Trump administration and alleged Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. Presidential campaign, as well as the Aldo Beckman Award from the White House Correspondents’ Association. Her stories about covering a contentious administration offer a revealing insider’s look at what is sure to be known as our country’s most explosive era of modern journalism.Ed Wasserman, dean of Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, moderated questions from the audience following Haberman’s presentation.Learn more about Cal Performances' speaker series.Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.
"There are a number of myths about elections that we've been hearing, saying that they are secure. And I want to shoot down two of those key myths," says Barbara Simons, board chair of Verified Voting, in a talk called "Can we recover from an attack on our election?" that she gave for the annual Minner Distinguished Lecture in Engineering Ethics on Sept. 18.The first myth, says Simons, is that because voting machines are never connected to the internet, they can't be hacked. The second is that there are so many types of voting systems that it's impossible to rig an election. She explains why both are untrue.She goes on to discuss how, in 2002, computers were introduced in U.S. elections without an analysis of the risks, how it led to states adopting paperless voting and what we need to do to avoid hacking in our 2020 presidential election."We have a solution, so that's the good news," says Simons. "We have a solution. You need voter-marked paper ballots. You need a strong chain of custody. And you need to physically sound, manually post-election ballot audits called risk-limiting audits."She says it's too late to have any laws passed in time for the 2020 election. Instead, we need the cooperation of local election officials and a national campaign. And, she says, it's up to volunteers and staff to help the election officials do risk-limiting audits. "If we can do that, there's a good chance we can avoid hacking of the 2020 election. But that's a big 'if.'"Simons is the former president of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), the nation’s largest educational and scientific computing society. An expert on electronic voting, she is the co-author of Broken Ballots: Will Your Vote Count? and has been on the board of advisers of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission since 2008.The Minner Distinguished Lecture in Engineering Ethics is an annual lecture supported by the Minner Endowment, a gift from Berkeley Engineering alumnus Warren Minner and his wife, Marjorie.Listen and read a transcript on Berkeley News.Watch a video of Simons' talk on Berkeley Engineering's website.
On Sept. 17, UC Berkeley hosted the second annual Aging, Research, and Technology Innovation Summit, a daylong event that brought together researchers, entrepreneurs, policymakers and health care workers to tackle some of the biggest questions in aging research. This year’s summit focused on the challenge of understanding and treating neurodegenerative diseases.Randy Schekman, a professor of molecular and cell biology at UC Berkeley, won the 2013 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine. He spoke at the summit about Parkinson's disease — what we already know about the disease and new research efforts that are underway."We have experienced a pandemic in Parkinson's disease," he told the audience. "The incidence ... is increasing dramatically in spite of the fact that the disease was first recognized and reported by clinical symptoms 200 years ago. As the population inexorably ages, we are experiencing a wave of this disease which inexorably takes the lives of those who are afflicted."Schekman, whose wife died from the disease two years ago, went on to describe a new collaborative research initiative — Aligning Science Across Parkinson's (ASAP). Led by Schekman, ASAP was created by the Milken Institute Center for Strategic Philanthropy with support from the Sergey Brin Family Foundation to better understand the underlying causes of Parkinson's disease."We want to know where the disease begins, what the molecules and cells and neural circuits that are affected primarily by the disease, and then how it progresses," he said. "Much of the research that gone on in the clinic has been valuable and important, but there are no cures. ... Many of us feel that what we really need to do is get into the laboratory to understand these basic processes."ASAP's first journal article, "Point of View: Coordinating a new approach to basic research into Parkinson's disease," was published on Sept. 25 in the open-access journal, eLife.Listen and read the transcript on Berkeley News.
"Law students are too risk-averse. There's too much planning and too little jumping in. You should experiment." That's U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan in conversation with Berkeley Law Dean Erwin Chemerinsky on Monday, Sept. 23 in Zellerbach Hall."I think sometimes people look at my resume like mine, and they think, 'Oh, it's just like this golden life.' What you're seeing are the jobs I got. What you're not seeing are all the jobs I didn't get ... when a door closes, a window opens. Sometimes the things that you think you wanted, it turns out that you're better off not getting them."Kagan began her career as a professor at the University of Chicago Law School, leaving to serve as Associate White House Counsel and later as policy adviser under President Bill Clinton. She then became a professor at Harvard Law School, and in 2003 was named its dean, its first woman dean. In 2009, she became Solicitor General of the United States, the officer responsible for representing the federal government before the Supreme Court. And in 2010, President Barack Obama nominated her to the Supreme Court itself to fill the vacancy arising from the retirement of Justice John Paul Stevens.During the conversation, Kagan discussed the mutual respect among justices and their shared passion for the law."I find it perplexing that you can’t like someone you disagree with, even on important matters,” she added. “I was extremely close to Justice Scalia, and spent the past few days writing a foreword for a book of his opinions. I like all my colleagues and feel close to many of them. There’s more to people than what they think about issues.”Read a transcript on Berkeley News.
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