OLLI @Berkeley's monthly newsletter                        
APRIL 2010

Table of Contents
Added Lecture: UC Berkeley's I-House
Lecture Series: Corporate Personhood
Faculty Profile: Rita Maran
Lecture Series: Mission Muralismo
Spring Lecture Series: The Longevity Revolution
Taheima Update
Summer Writing Courses
The Lunch Bunch
OLLI Member Lunches
OLLI Partner Announcements
OLLI Annual Fund
Give the Gift of Learning
OLLI Website

Donate to OLLI

Events Calendar

Find OLLI on Facebook
OLLI @Berkeley Staff
Susan Hoffman

Program Coordinator:
Aileen Kim

Program Assistants:
Marisa Cadena Belski
Satya Levine

OLLI @Berkeley
University of California
1925 Walnut St #1570
Berkeley, CA 94720-1570
tel. 510.642.9934
fax  510.642.2202

Mid-term Feedback and Summer Interest Circles Discussion

Come share your thoughts on OLLI. What are we doing right? What would make your experience even better? We count on your feedback to keep OLLI learning and growing and bringing you the programming you want.

Monday, April 12, 2010
12:30-2:00 pm
Room 150 University Hall

New Member Reception

Join volunteers from the Membership Committee and the Annual Fund Committee to learn how to get more from your OLLI membership.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010
David Brower Center
2150 Allston Way
1:30-3:00 pm

Course Evaluations

OLLI will be sending out course evaluation forms the last week of the term. We thank you in advance for your thoughtful responses. Course evaluations are an essential tool in our ongoing efforts to make OLLI @Berkeley the best it can be.

The Eye-opening History and Cross-cultural Impact of UC Berkeley's International House (I-House)

UC Berkeley's International House opened 80 years ago, changing the character of the campus and creating greater diversity. Hear how this was accomplished and what impact it has had on generations of national and international scholars from International House Emeriti Director Joseph Lurie.

Wednesday, April 7
2:30-4:00 pm
David Brower Center
2150 Allston Way, Berkeley

The History, Law, and Politics of Corporate Personhood
(Lecture Series)

This popular OLLI course is now being offered as a lecture series to accommodate a wider audience. Each lecture includes a presentation followed by a respondent.

Tickets are $15/lecture at the door.
All lectures take place at the David Brower Center (2150 Allston Way, Berkeley) from 2:30-4:30 pm.

Investigate the Supreme Court's recent ruling on the free-speech rights of corporations, as seen through the eyes of Berkeley professors in history, law, economics, and politics.

March 30--Richard M. Abrams, response by Dave Carniglia
"Perspectives on the Legitimacy of the Corporation in America"

April 6--Marshall Krause, response by Edwin Epstein
"The Campaigning Corporation: A Constitutional Perspective"

April 13--Brad DeLong, Economics, response by Max Aufhammer
[Title to be announced]

April 20--Jeff Lustig, response by Gordon Silverstein 
"The Evolution of the Corporate Form Over the 19th Century"

April 27--William Sokol, response by David Brody
"Labor Un-United Meets Corporate Citizens United: Workers, Their Unions, and Free Speech"

May 4--Richard Buxbaum, respondent to be announced
"Overview and Prospects"

Faculty Profile:  Rita Maran
by Bonnie Mager

Some people are born with exceptional abilities in math, or music, or painting. Rita Maran was born with an exceptional empathy for the human condition, human rights, and freedom.
Born on West End Avenue in Manhattan, a neighborhood of second-generation Jewish families, she grew up with a feeling of responsibility for her world. During the days of World War II, she was fearful and acutely aware of the danger and deprivations of those involved in the struggle in Europe. She handed out leaflets, sold war bonds, and did volunteer work for Russian War Relief as a young teenager while her friends were going on dates.
Her three years at Hunter College High School were what she considers her most challenging and inspirational academic experience. "They just expected the best of us." After high school she moved quickly through the New York City College system and finished in three years with a B.A. in Romance languages. She also continued working against war and for peace, involving herself with groups labeled by some as communists. As she explains it, she was never interested in the political side of that movement, but in the ideals of individual freedom and international human rights.
Just out of college, she plunged into marriage and, soon after, motherhood--raising her son and daughter in Manhattan. She became involved in the art world in New York and worked for The Metropolitan Museum of Art for many years. In the late 1960s, the family moved to London for her husband's career. She worked as a private art dealer but soon came to dislike the atmosphere and commercialism of that world.
Her passion, however, remained the international peace movement. She coordinated an international human rights campaign funded by War Resisters International, the Society of Friends (Quakers), and the International Fellowship of Reconciliation, groups active in both England and Western Europe. Her experience with these organizations drove her back to school in pursuit of greater understanding of human rights and the threats to peace and freedom. At the London School of Economics, she found that international human rights law offered the approach she was looking for focusing on non-violence as theory and in application. She was hooked.
In the early 1980s, Rita came to a crossroad in her life. She was being considered for a job with Amnesty International and decided that if it was offered to her she would stay in England forever. If not, she would try living in the U.S. again. Thus, she found her way to a strange and unknown land called Berkeley, California.
Needing an income and health insurance, she secured a job at the law school at Berkeley, where she made contacts and many friends including Frank Newman, an eminent law professor and California Supreme Court Justice. Her experience there encouraged her to apply to the Ph.D. program at UC Santa Cruz in International Human Rights. The program at UCSC proved to be a good fit, as it emphasized individual human rights and international rule of law. During the five years of her Ph.D. studies, she continued to work for Justice Newman at the law school in Berkeley.
Her achievements include a Senior Fulbright Scholarship to teach at the University of Indonesia in Jakarta. She worked as a human rights analyst for the State Department and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in Bosnia and Kosovo. She also co-founded Human Rights Advocates, a non-governmental organization concerned with human rights which continues its efforts today. Rita is the author of the book Torture: the Role of Ideology in the French-Algerian War.
She taught at UC Berkeley for fourteen years, and the University of San Francisco also invited her to teach. To her delight, her daughter and son live nearby. She has four grandchildren and a great-grandchild.
OLLI has involved her in this semester's course on Corporate Personhood, a concept initiated by a Supreme Court decision in January, which many find offensive and threatening. Rita and UC Berkeley history professor Richard Abrams have coordinated a panel of six speakers, a different speaker each week to examine this issue from the perspectives of history, law, economics, and politics. As a sort of mistress of ceremonies, Rita would like to encourage expressions of dissenting views. As she says, "We must find a place for honest dissent and civility."
Rita Maran--whose age was not discussed--is clearly speaking from the perspective of a long and challenging life, guided by her single-minded purpose that as long as we know there is injustice in the world, we must do something about it. She loves Berkeley, especially for its importance as a center of thinking, a place where many views from many incredible people can come together.

"The History, Law, and Politics of Corporate Personhood," which meets on Tuesdays from 2:30-4:30 p.m., has been opened to the general public ($15 general admission/lecture). See the list of the guest speakers and details on the course webpage.

Street Art San Francisco: Mission Muralismo

Two lectures remain in this fascinating series on a local art movement with global impact. Don't miss the opportunity to hear from Annice Jacoby, author of Street Art San Francisco: Mission  Muralismo.

April 6 and May 4
2:00-2:45 pm at Berkeley City College
(2050 Center Street, at Shattuck Avenue)

Free to OLLI members, $5 General Admission

Read more | Reserve a place

April 6--What's So Funny?

Mission artists are masterful comics.  We will review the work of founding artists of Last Gasp, R.Crumb and Spain Rodriguez, and the brilliant satirical murals of  Sirron Norris, Andrew Schoultz, Mats Stromberg, and Garth Williams.

May 4--Pranksters and Preachers

The Mission art movement is epicenter for the battle between art and advertising, the winter parking lot for Burning Man, the founding of the Battle of Seattle, Galeria de la Raza. From Billboard Liberation Front to Shepard Fairey.  We will examine the vocabulary and antics of the SF Print Collective, Scott Williams and Michael Roman whose work asks:  Who owns public space and public attention?

Spring 2010 Lecture Series: The Longevity Revolution

The Longevity Revolution

Wednesdays, 2:30-4:00 pm
David Brower Center (2150 Allston Way, Berkeley)
Free to OLLI members | $5 general admission
Read more | Reserve a place

April 14, 2010--David Baxter, Senior Vice President, AgeWave
"Reinventing Retirement: A Global Perspective"

April 21, 2010--Alvaro Fernandez, Founder and CEO, SharpBrains
"Reinventing Education, Work, and Life: Are We Ready for the Aging Society?"

April 28, 2010--Paul Kleyman, Director, Ethnic Elders Newsbeat/New America Media
Media Myths About Aging in America: "Death Panels," "Generational Theft," and "The Geezer Crusade"

Taheima Update

Staff and faculty advisers visited Taheima the second week in March. Although the it was still under construction, we were impressed with the majesty of the architecture, the team assembled to run the hotel, restaurants, and spa, and the coherence of the vision for a wellness and learning resort. The opening of the Berkeley program has been pushed to June 12-19 (an info session was held today, April 2, with another to be scheduled for May). Check the web site for more details.

Participants will be able to enjoy a range of activities, including field trips exploring the biodiversity of Mexico's flora and fauna with Berkeley professors Patrick O'Grady and Chelsea Specht (Professor O'Grady's research into the desert dunes of Mexico and its import on conservation is award-winning). Discuss current Mexican politics and the upcoming national elections with history and ethnic studies professor Alex Saragoza along with his colleagues from Tecnologico.  Lauren Carley will also be there to bring the joy of singing to Taheima.
Summer Writing Courses for Experienced Writers
Next Draft Writing
with Joan Holden

Have you shown your memoir, novel, play, or poetry--full of hope--to friends or editors, only to receive a lukewarm response? In this low-stakes, supportive setting, we will never ask, "Is this any good?" but always, "How could this be stronger?" Share your responses to each other 's work, and learn basic lessons on rewriting that Holden has gained from 40 years of writing and producing plays.

Course dates: June 1, 14, 21, and 28 (Mondays)
Time: 5-7 pm

Course fee (including OLLI membership for Summer 2010): $140
A minimum enrollment of 10 writers will be required to run the course.
Choosing Our Words: Exploring Language in Memoir
with Deborah Lichtman

We will continue our exploration of autobiographical writing by looking closely at the use of language.  How do writers capture their voice and project meaning in writing through style, rhythm, imagery, and even syntax? During four class meetings, we'll investigate these issues while we continue to emphasize personal pieces. The instructor will integrate class presentations and discussions, excerpted readings, and in-class writing exercises that focus on these topics.

Course dates: July 12, 26; August 9, 23 (Mondays)
Time: 5-7 pm

Course fee (including OLLI membership for Summer 2010): $140
A minimum enrollment of 10 writers is required to run the course.

Sign up by May 21 by calling the OLLI office at 510.642.9934.
The Lunch Bunch
by Lucille Poskanzer

2237 Shattuck Avenue, corner of Kittredge Street
Berkeley, CA  94704
Open only a few weeks and located one block from the David Brower Center, this is definitely the place for a big, juicy burger and fries. Lots of different topping to choose from as well as sides of onion rings, coleslaw, etc. There's plenty of other stuff, too, not all of which is calorie-laden, but probably not the place to go if you are a vegetarian or vegan. Open all day, every day--you order at the counter and the food is brought to you. Prices are moderate. No alcohol yet, so have a milkshake or a soft drink until they get their liquor license.

Gather Restaurant and Mandarin Garden

Lunch with your OLLI friends at one of two downtown restaurants that welcome drop-in groups. They will welcome a group of 8 people without reservations and will provide separate checks if requested, but if you have 15 or 20, you need to call ahead.

Mandarin Garden, 2025 Shattuck Avenue Berkeley, between Addison Street and University Avenue., near University Hall. Telephone: 510.848.4849 or 510.848.4009. Closed on Mondays. The tables are well-spaced, the service is quick, and the prices are really low. They offer generous portions of straightforward Chinese food, nothing high-end gourmet.  It's fairly quiet, so great for discussions.

Gather, 2200 Oxford Street, at Allston Way in the David Brower Center. Telephone: 510.809.0400. gatherrestaurant.com. Nice, open atmosphere, tables well-spaced, and a menu of locally-sourced food, with many vegetarian and vegan choices. Service is friendly and accommodating. Some dishes can be smallish and/or a little pricey.
OLLI @Berkeley Partner Announcements
Join Marin Theatre Company (MTC) for the 2nd Annual Theatre Tour to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF).
Oct 15-18, 2010
  • Play discussions with MTC's Producing Director Ryan Rilette
  • Intimate breakfasts with actors from the OSF Acting Company
  • 3 nights at Ashland Springs Hotel. within walking distance to the Festival
  • Farewell dinner at one of Ashland's finest restaurants
  • Round trip transportation by bus
$799 double occupancy and $1049 single occupancy
Special $50 discount per person for a limited number OLLI participants!
For details: download a flyer
MTC contact: Helen Rigby, helen@marintheatre.org
OLLI member contact: Deborah Goodman, goodman@comcast.net

OLLI Annual Fund

The Annual Fund accounts for a significant portion of our budget and we count on those that are able to donate to step up so that OLLI can stay affordable. Our goal for 2009-10 is 100% participation to reach a target of $75,000. We are over $46,000 so far. Join the more than 300 households who have contributed to the 2009-10 Annual Fund. We want everyone to say "I contributed". Click here to learn more or to make a donation.

Give the Gift of Learning
Share the joy of learning--give someone a gift certificate for an OLLI @Berkeley membership and course.

Contact the OLLI office at 510.642.9934.