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Summer Reading: Nonsense

Nonsense

Nonsense: The Power of Not Knowing
Jamie Holmes
New York: Crown Publishers, 2015

The very real perils and consequences of jumping to conclusions, of feeling total certainty and confidence, and the power of being able to handle ambiguity. (John Keats called this “Negative capability,” and he saw it most vividly in Shakespeare’s writing.) Told through a series of case studies ranging from the workplace to personal life. If our modern condition is one of unpredictability and increasing complexity, Holmes’ lessons for “how to deal with what we don’t understand” are particularly urgent.

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

Summer Reading: Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City
Matthew Desmond
New York: Crown Publishers, 2016

The day-to-day experiences of landlords, tenants, movers, sheriffs, and others wrapped up in the economy of eviction. A great companion to last year’s On the Same Page pick, Just Mercy; at one point, Desmond writes, “If incarceration had come to define the lives of men from impoverished black neighborhoods, eviction was shaping the lives of women. Poor black men were locked up. Poor black women were locked out.” Desmond makes the compelling case that stable housing is a precondition for civic engagement and democracy, because civic life begins at home, and is rooted in a community. After telling the unforgettable stories of a few to illustrate the plight of millions of Americans, he devotes the epilogue to making broader policy recommendations that aim to break the cycle of eviction.

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

June is Pride Month

SF Pride - June 24-25, 2017

#SFpride #summerOfLove50 #resist

Since 1970, Pride celebrates the resistance of the Stonewall Uprising of June 28,1969 and the struggle for human rights for all. Pride Month hasn’t been officially declared by the current president, but fortunately that won’t stop the celebration, or the resistance. If you’re looking for a good GLBTQIA movie or documentary — to learn, laugh or cry — Kanopy has almost 400 streaming videos on the diverse array of queer related themes, available to anyone on campus or to UCB via proxy or VPN. And of course we have lots of books, journals and databases as well!

Summer Reading List: Benjamin Franklin: An American Life

Benjamin Franklin: An American Life

Benjamin Franklin: An American Life
Walter Isaacson
New York: Simon & Schuster, 2003

Among his many accomplishments, Franklin founded libraries, volunteer firefighting companies, and served as the United States’ first Postmaster General. According to Isaacson, Franklin was “the most accomplished American of his age and the most influential in inventing the type of society America would become.” During Franklin’s adulthood, the American ideals of civic life were crafted, along with many of the institutions which foster those ideals.

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

New library service!

UC Berkeley Global Resource Sharing

You can now pick up Interlibrary Loan items at most library locations and NRLF!

When you fill out your ILL request, just select the library you prefer from the pick up location list. You will be notified by email when the item is ready at your preferred location.

Remember to pick up ILL material by the hold expiration date or items will be returned to the lending institution.

Microform material will continue to be available as Library Use Only in the Newspaper & Microform Library, regardless of the pickup location selected.

Summer Reading List: The Study Qu’ran: A New Translation and Commentary

The Study Qu'ran

The Study Qu’ran: A New Translation and Commentary
Seyyed Hossein Nasr
New York: HarperOne, 2015

Six years in the making, The Study Quran is described by its editor-in-chief, Seyyed Hossein Nasr, as “a small contribution to unity in the Islamic world.” More importantly, it is also an opportunity for non-Muslims to understand the Quran in historical context. Translated by a team of both Sunni and Shiite scholars of Islam, this edition of the Quran also offers in-depth commentaries to help place the book’s more controversial passages into historical context, and to examine the Quran from multiple Islamic spiritual, theological, and legal perspectives. Upon its publication in late 2015, the book sold out its first print run immediately — a rare feat for any book about religion.

At a moment when Islam is one of the world’s few religions that is growing instead of shrinking, the Quran and what it means to Muslims still remains a puzzle to many non-Muslims in the west. This book is an opportunity to reverse some of the Islamophobia that has been encroaching on many Americans by introducing us to the basics of what Muslims believe. As the current generation of Americans becomes less religious, and as religious literacy declines in the media while religious studies is also on the decline in academia, books like The Study Quran offer us an opportunity to change our perspectives about one of the world’s most misunderstood religions.

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

Summer Reading List: Ready Player One

Ready Player One

Ready Player One
Ernest Cline
New York: Crown Publishers, 2011

The fantastic novel Ready Player One presents a world in which virtual reality technology becomes fully integrated with and inseparable from humankind’s lives. With the advancement of technology in our own world, there is a growing amount of hype and optimism around the diverse applicability of virtual reality but also a lack of thorough study of its implications. In about a generation’s time, virtual-reality technology should mature and if it indeed stays true to its current hype, it is our generation’s responsibility to conceive of some of its potential implications to better prepare ourselves for what’s about to dawn on us. Ready Player One serves as a cautionary tale as it explores those implications through the characters’ relationships, their sense of identity, and the greed for power.

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

Summer Reading List: Borderwall as Architecture

Borderwall as Architecture

Borderwall as Architecture
by Ronald Rael
Oakland: University of California Press, 2017

In timely fashion, Ronald Rael, a professor in the Department of Architecture, takes on the subject of the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico in his accessible new book that Architect magazine has described as “intrepid” and multi-dimensional: “[p]art historical account, part theoretical appraisal, and part design manifesto.” Through a series of essays by Rael and other contributors that are sometimes practical, sometimes polemical, and sometimes satirical, the wall is examined for its multiple meanings not only from a design perspective, but also from an environmental, economic, and social one, reflecting on the way the wall not only stands as a symbol of security that divides people, but also as an object that has the potential to bring people together.

For more about Professor Rael’s work here at UC Berkeley, see Cal’s #InThisGen pages.

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

Summer Reading List: Forked

Forked: A New Standard for American Dining

Forked: A New Standard for American Dining
by Saru Jayaraman
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016

Written by one of today’s most vibrant social justice leaders, this book makes the case that economic justice is not just a moral imperative but also a viable business strategy. Saru has spent almost two decades organizing restaurant workers, and what she has learned about their low wages and exploitative working conditions are a must-read for all of us as consumers. But more important is her vision for what a sustainable, living-wage restaurant industry can look like, supported by profiles of companies who are already doing the right thing today.

For more information about Saru Jayaraman’s work, including her Mario Savio Memorial Lecture in 2014, we invite you to visit UC Berkeley’s #InThisGen pages.

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

Summer Reading List: A Crack in Creation

A Crack in Creation

A Crack in Creation: Gene Editing and the Unthinkable Power to Control Evolution
by Jennifer A. Doudna and Samuel H. Sternberg
Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2017

A Crack in Creation discusses the origin and impact of the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technology co-invented by UC Berkeley biologist Jennifer Doudna. Hailed as the scientific breakthrough of the century, CRISPR-Cas9 is a technology that can change the very way we live in a single generation and reshape our world in unimaginable ways–offering potential cures for diseases and solutions to world hunger while also raising a series of ethical questions about the consequences of being able to change our DNA.

In their book, Doudna and fellow researcher Samuel Sternberg tell the compelling story of this discovery and wrestle with those questions about what we will do with this new technology that gives us the power to reshape our evolution.

There are many compelling reasons for why this is a worthy contribution for any booklist, but for Berkeley the justification is even richer. UC Berkeley has been ground zero for this entire technology, with contributions from others around the world. Secondly, the ramifications of this technology are so widespread that only a campus with broad excellence in all areas is adequate to engage the range of implications that this technology offers.

(Visit UC Berkeley’s #InThisGen pages for much more about Professor Doudna’s work on CRISPR.)

This book is part of the 2017 Berkeley Summer Reading List. Stay tuned for more weekly posts!

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