Berkeley

My Real Education at Berkeley

Andrew Lam

Yet if I didn’t learn how to write at Cal, it was certainly here that my literary life really began. A refugee boy from Vietnam at age 11, I barely spoke a word of English. I lived in a crowded apartment full of refugees where Mission Street ended and the working class of Daly City began. It wasn’t until I was a junior at Lowell High School in San Francisco, when a few of my Vietnamese friends were applying to Cal, that I first heard of the school. And I thought that maybe I, too, should apply. 

Messages in a Bottle: Listening to an Old Answering Machine

Andrew Lam

I bought my first apple computer at 20 when it was available at Cal for a steep discount, and because I was disenchanted with biochmestry, started writing, and I haven't stopped. In my box of college things, there are dozens of floppy disks whose contents contain amateurish writing of a broken hearted young man, but that, as they say, is another story. The answering machine was a novelty when I went to college in the mid 80's but has now become a relic, an oral journal of sort, going on history's shelf next to old postcards and the handwritten letters.

Top Literary Cities in the U.S.

Gabriella Tutino

What determines a city as ‘literary?’ It’s not enough to have a large library, unique bookstores, or be the birthplace of a famous writer. Nor is it enough to be one of the top literate cities in the United States  Most literary cities have a strong writing program at one of their numerous colleges and universities, as well as bookstores and institutions hosting event after event. If anything, a literary city is a blend of the historical, cultural, and modern parts of literature, encouraging and inspiring future generations to appreciate and take part in the literary world.

Why the San Francisco Thought Police Give Liberals a Bad Name

Tara Taghizadeh

Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Once upon a time, the San Francisco Bay Area was a haven for liberals, who found a welcoming home in the city and environs that gave rise to the Free Speech Movement; became a sanctuary for war objectors; and whose politics proved a thorn in the backside of the right-wing then-governor, Ronald Reagan. But the live-and-let-live attitude that marked the ‘60s and ‘70s has given rise to a more intolerant brand of liberalism, which is considered (by more moderate Democrats) as a dangerous crack in San Francisco’s formerly reputable veneer. 

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