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Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Few events in the past century equal the importance of the Russian Revolution. And yet we only know it through the fog of propaganda and fear, and the actual events of 1917 are long forgotten in the mists of time. Find out what actually happened in that fabled year, and how it fit together with the world events of that epoch. Longtime Russian scholar  Anthony D’Agostino  (SF State) joins Anarchist scholar from socialist Yugoslavia  Andrej Grubacic  (CIIS) to unpack some of those tangled...
Topics: Russian Revolution, Soviet Union, Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin, workers councils, Soviets, working class,...
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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edited from silent footage from the Prelinger Archive to collect the images of Powell Street cable car turnaround and some shots going up and down Powell too.
Topics: Powell Street, cable cars, 1920s
Shaping San Francisco
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Excerpted from the Ecology Emerges interview with Susan Swift. She is a former Abalone Alliance staffer who grew disaffected and resigned a year after the big Diablo Canyon direct action campaign, in part due to the inability of the Abalone Alliance to make alliances with organized labor,or to even consider the plight of folks who couldn't easily take days of their lives to sit in jails, or camp out in protest, etc.
Topics: Abalone Alliance, ecology, anti-nuclear, labor, tactics
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Ten minutes from the May 5, 2015 demonstration in front of 2840-2848 Folsom Street in San Francisco during the last open house before offers went in... some words from Carin McKay, Kirk Read, and Chris Carlsson, all tenants, and a short postscript from Mokai... video by Nick Kasimatis... many thanks!
Topics: displacement, eviction, San Francisco, housing, Land Trust, SF Community Land Trust, Frances...
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Saul Bloom of ARC/Ecology in San Francisco describes his history as a Greenpeace staffer and early involvement in anti-nuke politics, with a focus on the campaign to stop the homeporting of the USS Missouri in San Francisco in the 1980s. The USS Missouri, during Reagan's administration, was slated to be redesigned to carry cruise missiles and thus become a first-strike launching pad for nuclear war.
Topics: Nuclear weapons, nukes, anti-nuke, USS Missouri, homeporting, Fleet Week
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Longtime poet and activist Nina Serrano describes how she organized, without any prior experience, a demonstration on Market Street to demand the freedom to travel--then, as now, banned or restricted by the U.S. government with respect to Cuba and other countries.
Topics: Travel ban, Freedom to Travel, Cuba, 1960s, San Francisco
Shaping San Francisco
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Longtime activist Charlie Hinton continues the second part of his oral history, describing his re-engagement with activism in 1992 as part of the public campaign against the 500th anniversary of the landing of Columbus. From there he goes to Haiti and begins a decades-long effort to support the people of Haiti against the depradations of US power. He also connects with prisoners in Pelican Bay State Prison and eventually pens a one-man show about solitary confinement. And much more!
Topics: Columbus, indigenous rights, Haiti, Nicaragua, Chile, prisons, solitary confinement, San Quentin...
Shaping San Francisco
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Art & Politics: Miranda Bergman Miranda Bergman , a Mission District resident for many decades and local icon, has been painting public murals since the 1970s when she started as a member of the Haight Ashbury muralists. Her involvement in Central America, Palestine, and women’s politics has shaped her participation in epic works such as Maestrapeace , a Placa mural in Balmy Alley, and many others around the Bay Area and the world.
Topics: murals, community murals, women, children, seniors, San Francisco, Mission DIstrict, Balmy Alley,...
Shaping San Francisco
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Molly Martin, interviewed in February 2019, discusses working on the Women's Building as an electrician, and then the controversy over women entering the SF Police Department as officers, and its relationship to jobs and women's work.
Topics: Lesbians, police, Women's Building, discrimination, equal rights
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Craig Baldwin is a San Francisco experimental filmmaker.  He was born in Oakland, California and created his own found footage style of filmmaking in such works as Wild Gunman (1978), RocketKitKongoKit (1986), Tribulation 99 (1991, O No Coronado! (1992), Sonic Outlaws (1995), Spectres of the Spectrum (1999), and Mock Up on Mu (2008).
Topics: Experimental, Films Bruce Conner, Craig Baldwin
Shaping San Francisco
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How do we “hold” (record/store) history now compared to the past? How do we “tell” history now, and has the relationship between archival sources and narrative arcs/presentation changed with digitalization? What do we learn from narration-free archival materials (a la Prelinger home movies, foundsf photo pages, etc.)? And popular attitudes towards history: who cares about footnotes? How are archivists beginning to shape new ways of making history public? Film archivist and librarian ...
Topics: archives, memory, hypertext, links, nonlinearity, public libraries, public collections, diversity,...
Shaping San Francisco
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Before San Francisco: Spanish and Mexican Peninsula From the original encounters between local indigenous peoples and the first Spanish arrivals, to the spread of the disruptive Mission cattle-based economy, Mexican independence, and eventual abolition of Indian slavery, the peninsula that became San Francisco had a fascinating and overlooked pre-urban history. Author Adriana Camarena covers the period when Mexico was fragmenting and local Californios existed in a pastoral but brutal local...
Topics: Ohlone, indigenous, Californios, ranchos, Spanish empire, Mexico, Mexican Independence,...
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Efforts to integrate history and ecological restoration can be found tucked away in most San Francisco neighborhoods. Neighborhood greenways and corridors are most often the result of initial community-based activism to beautify an urban space, and end up becoming much more complex projects. Sophie Constantinou shares stories of creating the Buchanan Street Mall project and a newly accessible open space along the Bernal Cut, and how the different neighborhoods shaped these similar projects....
Topics: public space, neighborhood corridors, wildlife, habitat, gardens, parks, vollunteers, Recreation...
Shaping San Francisco
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San Francisco native (b. 1945) and resident Darrell Rogers describes how he became involved with the food giveaway which was the ransom demanded by the Symbionese Liberation Army of the Hearst family for the then-kidnapped Patty Hearst.
Topics: People In Need (PIN), food giveaway, SLA, Patty Hearst, William Randolph Hearst, ransom, 1974,...
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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An interview under the "Ecology Emerges" project of oral histories on the arc of environmentalism, ecology, environmental and social justice, running from the 1950s to the 2000s. Antonio Roman-Alcala has been deeply involved in San Francisco permaculture projects over the past decade, notably including the Alemany Farm, the Rhode Island Street garden, and is the producer of the new documentary "In Search of Good Food."
Topics: permaculture, ecology, gardens, horticulture, food security, urban farming
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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International volunteers rushed to Spain in 1936 after General Francisco Franco led a military coup against the Spanish Republic.  Adam Hochschild , author of  Spain In Our Hearts , brings to life remarkable characters in this bloody and bitter conflict that consumed Spain for 3 years. 80 years ago this spring the conflict ended, leaving the country under three decades of military dictatorship.
Topics: Revolution, Barcelona, Madrid, Spain, Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, FDR, Franklin Roosevelt,...
Shaping San Francisco
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The “Language of Water” is a vision to retrofit strategic locations of the Islais Creek Watershed to reduce flood risk and invest in real resiliency from sea level rise, drought, flooding and demonstrating the state of the art practices available to the agency or the cities. This proposal includes plans to create multi-purpose, distributed infrastructure for water supply, wastewater and stormwater treatment and the incorporation of creek daylighting and floodable spaces that make room for...
Topics: sewers, sewerage, composting toilets, Hetch Hetchy, rainwater, graywater, black water, Islais...
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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A short clip from a longer interview with Josephine Firpo-Alioto and her daughter Regina Alioto in which they recount the 1920s and 1930s Italian community on Potrero Hill, in particular describing the vibrant Italian Men's Social Clubs of the time.
Topics: Italian, Potrero Hill, 1930s, Alioto, San Francisco
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Former Redevelopment official Carlo Middione tells the story of providing a building in the late 1960s to Angela Davis and "her group" at Fillmore and Golden Gate, and the surprising thing that happened as a result.
Topics: Angela Davis, black power, arsenal, arms, 1960s, Redevelopment Agency
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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First 90 seconds of Chris Carlsson setting up how he's using the FoundSF.org archive to create a narrative arc explaining the context and precursor movements and events to the 1967 Summer of Love. Filmed at the DeYoung Museum on June 30, 2017 by Adriana Camarena.
Topics: public history, history, historiography, storytelling, narrative form, narration, multimedia,...
Shaping San Francisco
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A short film clip from Greta Snider's Hard Core Home Movie .  Used by permission of the artist Greta Snider.
Topics: Snider, Film
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Shaping San Francisco invites you on a tour of India Basin’s shoreline open space, parks, and historic sites. Not only will you get a close-up tour of this much neglected part of San Francisco, but we’ll be discussing San Francisco’s efforts to plan for sea-level rise even while the overlooked shoreline is suddenly spruced up and made publicly available like never before. After our walk we’ll chat at the west end of India Basin.
Topics: Heron's Head, India Basin, redevelopment, Hunter's Point, shoreline, sealevel rise, Islais Creek,...
Shaping San Francisco
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On November 30, 1999 the World Trade Organization was prevented from meeting in Seattle by unprecedented phalanxes of self-organized protesters who filled the streets, tied up key intersections, blockaded the convention center, and used video and the internet in ways they’d never been used before. Bay Area activists were in the middle of it all, and veterans of that experience will revisit that moment to help us rethink this moment. With Anuradha Mittal, David Solnit, Eddie Yuen, Steve...
Topics: Globalization, alter-globalization, protest, Seattle, WTO, food politics, campesinos, ILWU, port...
Shaping San Francisco
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El Polín Spring and the area around it is a great example of how National Park stewardship has brought history to life. Follow the water through MacArthur Meadow, the Tennesee Hollow watershed, to the Crissy Field marshes—including the newly restored Quartermaster Reach. With Lew Stringer, Joel Pomerantz, LisaRuth Elliott, and Chris Carlsson.
Topics: water, restoration, Presidio, Crissy Field, Tennessee Hollow, MacArthur Meadow, Quartermaster...
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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From the PRelinger Archive's silent footage of San Francisco in the 1920s, this is an edited excerpt featuring the ferries and Ferry Building
Topics: Ferries, Ferry Buildilng, San Francisco
Shaping San Francisco
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San Francisco native (b. 1945) and resident Darrell Rogers describes the exciting and incomparable "scene" at Hippie Hill, where he was a dancer during the mid-1960s, and was in the middle of the cultural experiments of the period.
Topics: Hippie Hill, African dance, 1965, acid, LSD, Golden Gate Park, hippies, beatniks
Shaping San Francisco
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Osento Bathhouse. Amelia’s. Artemis Cafe. Old Wives Tales. Modern Times Bookstore. Names and functions of these venues have changed, but they are part of the living memory of Valencia Street. Long before it descended into the white tablecloth, boutique-filled, gentrified peculiarity of today, the Valencia Street corridor was a hotbed of radical feminism and lesbian culture. LisaRuth Elliott moderates a conversation with some of the women who helped create the important sites and undergirded...
Topics: Lesbians, sex, nightlife, bars, cafes, bookstores, Valencia Street, Women, Women's Building,...
Shaping San Francisco
by Shaping San Francisco
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Rosey Jencks, 12-year veteran of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, specializing in water infrastructure, gives a basic overview of the history and structure of the sewage system and watersheds in San Francisco.
Topics: sewers, watershed, box sewers, landfill, wetlands
Shaping San Francisco - Audio Recordings
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Lou Dematteis  is an extraordinary social documentarian, photographer and filmmaker. He has been taking photographs of the Mission District since the 1970s, capturing the low-rider scene of that era, and being at the first Carnavals and leaving us a stunning visual record. He has also covered the Nicaraguan Revolution into the mid-1980s, the depradations of the multinational oil industry in the Amazon, and more recently has been making movies, with his “The Other Barrio” capturing the...
Topics: Art and Politics, Low riders, Sandinistas, Nicaragua, Italy, Italians, photographer, documentary...
Shaping San Francisco
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Longtime artist and curator Rene Ya ñez describes how in 1972 he and his colleague Ralph Maradiaga helped launch the San Francisco version of Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) by putting an altar in front of the Galeria de la Raza at the time. Since then, the event has expanded and in some ways has changed its character. Rene has moved on to curating for many years an annual show of Day of the Dead altars at SOMARTS, while the procession he helped initiate in the late 1980s has become an...
Topics: Day of the Dead, Dia de los Muertos, altars, death, living, processions, parades, honor, veil,...
Shaping San Francisco
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With the twang of a steel guitar, the whine of a fiddle and the plunk of a banjo comes an instant association; the pick-up truck, the cowboy boots, the rolling hills, dusty fields, lonesome highways and the flag. For many, it has also come to signify conservatism, “traditional values,” American chauvinism, and even racism, bigotry and the confederate flag. Although one wouldn’t realize it from listening to today’s pop Country radio stations, Country music has been anything but a...
Topics: Country music, Country & Western, Folk, Country, rural, coal mining, workers, strikes,...
Shaping San Francisco
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"The past is not dead, it is living in us, and will be alive in the future which we are now helping to make." - William Morris With the apparent end of one era and the dawning of a new â and unknown one â we thus turn our attention to the question of inheritance and new generations. We want to think about the way political generations form, and whether the experience of past generations can play a useful role in this. How do those who have been through previous generations of...
Topics: anti-globalization, activism, summits, Free Association, radical politics, PM Press, Shaping SF,...
Shaping San Francisco
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In November 1938, California elected its first-ever liberal Democratic governor Culbert Olson, supported by a state-wide Popular Front coalition of liberals, unionists, communists, and other radicals. But by 1940 the Popular Front forces were already fracturing and from its wreckage emerged key elements of the Cold War. How did Communists help build this social movement, and how did the Communist Party undercut its own principles during WWII? And where did that leave California politics at the...
Topics: Communism, New Deal, EPIC, Upton Sinclair, Townsend pension plan, Ham and Eggs campaign, Culbert...
Shaping San Francisco
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Saul Bloom is the director of ARC/Ecology in San Francisco where he has been deeply involved in local military base decommissioning, ecological and economic agitation, and working for environmental and social justice. He got his start with Greenpeace in the late 1970s and was instrumental in the fight against the homeporting of the USS Missouri in the 1980s. Part of the Shaping San Francisco "Ecology Emerges" oral history project, documenting the arc of environmental activism from...
Topics: ecology, Ecology Emerges, Greenpeace, ARC/Ecology, USS Missouri, Hunter's Point Naval Base, Alameda...
Shaping San Francisco
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Part of the "Ecology Emerges" oral history interviews covering the last 50 years history of Bay Area ecological activism, from conservation to environmental justice. Kirsten Schwind is a director of Bay Localize, a project spanning a number of ecological intiatives in planning, transportation, community development, urban agriculture and sustainability.
Topics: ecology, Ecology Emerges, urban agriculture, economic growth, environmentalism, environmental...
Shaping San Francisco
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Part of Shaping San Francisco's "Ecology Emerges" series of interviews, in this one Linda Weiner describes her involvement with the northern California chapter of the Sierra Club, her work on global climate change and environmental justice, including some reflection on her own trajectory from social service work into environmentalism.
Topics: Ecology, climate change, global warming, environmental justice, Sierra Club
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Yolanda Lopez, 1942-2021, was a San Francisco artist and activist with roots in the San Francisco State College strike 1968-69. She went on to a long engagement with the Mission District community, co-founding Basta Ya! Newspaper in conjunction with the Committee to Defend Los Siete in 1970. Her art has come to be more recognized since her passing, with a major show in San Diego in late 2021. In this clip she discusses her art, the vital centrality of self-representation in her work, how her...
Topics: art, politics, representation, self-representation, Aztec dancing, public murals, Artists as...
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A Shaping San Francisco "Urban Forum: Walk & Talk" covering Bernal Heights, from the Bernal Cut and its long transit history to some recent restoration and clean-up efforts and neighborhood history installations to a sequence of earthquake shacks from 1906, inhabited and renovated for life in the 21st century. We walk up and down a lot of staircases, including one built by the WPA in 1940, we see about 10 shacks, and countless amazing views, hidden gardens, and a lot of fragments...
Topics: Walk & Talk, Shaping San Francisco, Bernal Heights, earthquake shacks, Bernal Cut, Southern...
Shaping San Francisco
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Fred Glass  ( From Mission to Microchip: A History of the California Labor Movement ), takes a long look at the labor history of California with  Chris Carlsson  ( Foundsf.org ), who focuses on the ebb and flow of class war in San Francisco.
Topics: Labor, unions, San Francisco, Oakland, California, strikes, SEIU, OPEIU, ILWU, Oxnard, teachers
Shaping San Francisco
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One of the interviews done as part of the "Ecology Emeregs oral history project in 2009-2010 by Shaping San Francisco. Juliet Ellis is the executive director of Urban Habitat in Oakland and here tells how she got involved originally with Carl Anthony and eventually took on the leadership, orienting the organization towards its current activities.
Topics: ecology, environmental justice, social justice, Urban Habitat, planning, regionalism, coalitions,...
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Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz grew up in rural Oklahoma, daughter of a landless farmer and half-Indian mother. Her paternal grandfather, a white settler, farmer, and veterinarian, had been a labor activist and Socialist in Oklahoma with the Industrial Workers of the World in the first two decades of the twentieth century. The stories of her grandfather inspired her to lifelong social justice activism. Married at eighteen, she left with her husband for San Francisco, California, where she has lived most...
Topics: Dunbar-Ortiz, American Indian Movement (AIM), activism
Shaping San Francisco
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A Shaping San Francisco "Urban Forum: Walk n Talk" going from Fort Funston in the southwest corner of the city through the old base, now a park, to Ocean Beach and north to Sloat Blvd., then east on Wawona to Pine Lake. Several stops along the way with semi-long presentations by Shaping San Francisco's Chris Carlsson covering military and economic history, wildflowers, sewage, urban farming, water, swales and graywater, and many other random things. Includes photos from...
Topics: Military, ecology, water, graywater, sewage, beach, economy, asphalt, Lake Merced, The Duel, sand...
Shaping San Francisco
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For the Record: Eyewitness Testimonies of the police murder of Luis Gongora Pat Luis Góngora Pat was a Mayan indigenous man, murdered by San Francisco police officers on April 7, 2016 on Shotwell Street near 19th Street in the Mission. His killing came in the wake of other homicides by police of Black and Brown communities members. His family pursued every legal avenue available, including a civil case which was settled in January 2019. Three and a half years later, the story of this brutal...
Topics: police killing, police murder, police brutality, homeless, Mayan, indigenous, neighbors, unhoused,...
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This is a short movie clip of Jay Rosenblatt's film King of the Jews .  Used by permission and courtesy of Jay Rosenblatt.
Topics: Jay Rosenblatt, film
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Video of: Kent Minault  tells of the explosive first six months of the San Francisco Diggers. Featuring stories of the San Francisco Mime Troupe, Tim Leary, Huey Newton, Emmett Grogan, Lenore Kandel, Richard Brautigan, and Gary Snyder. His chronicle charts the first Digger free food in the park, tense encounters with the police, the opening of the Digger Free Store, and the Invisible Circus at Glide Memorial Church. Accompanied by photos by Chuck Gould, and music by Peter Coyote. The evening...
Topics: Diggers, Haight-Ashbury, Free, Free food, free stores, Panhandle, Invisible Circus, Black Panthers,...
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A short clip from a longer 1996 interview with Mattachine Society founder Harry Hay in which he describes the common 19th century phenomenon of "Remittance Men." They were the outcast, typically gay, children of well-off families who were sent "as far away as possible," i.e. to San Francisco or Vancouver, where they could carry on their lives without shaming the families...
Topics: gay, homoesexual, remittance men, 19th century, dandy, upper class
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Revolutionary and journalist John Ross describes the efforts of Mission Rebels and militants of the Progressive Labor Party to blockade the Mission Armory in solidarity with the uprising in Hunter's Point.
Topics: Hunter's Point riot, 1966, Armory, Mission Rebels, Progressive Labor Party
Shaping San Francisco
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Ellen Ullman  writes in her new book  Life in Code  “The penetration of technology into the interstices of human existence is nearly complete,” and then demystifes how humans turn their intentions and ideas into the computer codes that are the language of computers.  Katja Schwaller  puts “Twitterlandia” under the microscope of her critical gaze, showing how the reconfiguration of mid-Market embodies a larger capture and repurposing of public space by private interests. And ...
Topics: computers, programming, public space, commons, coding, feminism, sexism, racism, Silicon Valley,...
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Judy Goldhaft is a cofounder of Planet Drum Foundation in San Francisco, and was previously one of the band of radicals known as the San Francisco Diggers. She also helped start the Frisco Bay Mussel Group in the late 1970s and has been in the middle of the emeregnce of bioregionalism. She is interviewed here as part of the wide-ranging "Ecology Emerges" oral histories of the early ecology movement, traversing the era from the 1950s-60s all the way to the present.
Topics: Diggers, Planet Drum, ecology, bioregionalism, Frisco Bay Mussel Group, water, peripheral canal
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Women In Resistance, a new mural recently completed in Balmy Alley, is honored along with a series of posters by the Poster Syndicate featuring each of the several dozen women subjects of the mural. A panel discussion moderated by Lucia Gonzalez Ippolito and Natasha Kohli featured Nanci Pili Hernandez, Lara Kiswani, Nina Parks, and Cecilia Chung, was held at AlleyCat Books on 24th Street in San Francisco on Sept. 27, 2019. The discussion is joined in progress, when Nanci is discussing her...
Topics: justice, racism, unity, feminism, murals, heroes, heroines, transgender, politics, organizing
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From the weird madness of the Reber Plan to dam both ends of the Bay into freshwater lakes in the 1950s to the Save the Bay movement of the early 1960s that helped create the Bay Conservation and Development Commission, we’ve come a long way in a half century. Today’s open shorelines, closed trash dumps, and returning wetlands honor and preserve our greatest public resource. Historian  Chuck Wollenberg and  Steve Goldbeck  from BCDC.
Topics: Bay, landfill, sewage, resilience, dams, earthen dams, fresh water, salt water, crackpot plans,...
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A collaborative effort of the  San Francisco Department of Memory , this project digitally preserves and promotes San Francisco community newspapers. Over 1,600 issues generated in eight neighborhoods dating back to the 1960s are now available online. Collection project manager LisaRuth Elliott , along with journalist and historian Elizabeth Creely , present highlights of the collection.
Topics: community, community groups, archive, archiving, archivist, Department of Memory, San Francisco...
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Crossing centuries and social mores, editors  Ivy Anderson  and  Devon Angus  ( Alice: Memoirs of a Barbary Coast Prostitute ) and author  Clare Sears  ( Arresting Dress: Cross-Dressing, Law, and Fascination in Nineteenth-Century San Francisco ) take us into 19th Century San Francisco’s underworld of prostitutes, cross dressers, and others who transgressed the strict gender norms of the time. We look at how normative gender and sexuality were policed and created by widespread mid-1800s...
Topics: gender, sexuality, cross-dressing, policing, normativity, sex work, prostitution, SF Bulletin,...
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Podcasts are shaping the presentation of history through audio delivery. Hosts of several local series tell us why they chose this new technology to delve into the past and how they gauge success. Hear clips of each program in a special podcast challenge! With  David Gallagher  and  Woody LaBounty  (The Western Neighoborhoods Project  Outside Lands San Francisco ),  Liam O’Donoghue  ( East Bay Yesterday ), and  David Boyer  ( The Intersection ).
Topics: video, podcasts, oral history, journalism, history, ethics, storytelling, East Bay, San Francisco,...
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Longtime activist Nina Serrano describes how she became a poet and writer and a contributor (along with her husband and son) to the San Francisco Good Times  newspaper... and how it led her to reclaim her original last name!
Topics: journalism, poetry, 1960s, Good Times, underground press, feminism
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An interview under the "Ecology Emerges" project of oral histories on the arc of environmentalism, ecology, environmental and social justice, running from the 1950s to the 2000s. Tom was there at the founding of Friends of the Earth, working closely with David Brower, and edited the FoE journal "Not Man Apart."
Topics: ecology, Ecology Emerges, economic growth, environmentalism, environmental justice, social justice,...
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An interview under the "Ecology Emerges" project of oral histories on the arc of environmentalism, ecology, environmental and social justice, running from the 1950s to the 2000s. Miya Yoshitani works with the Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN) for whom she has worked in Australia and the East Bay. She has a long history in environmental justice activism.
Topics: ecology, Ecology Emerges, urban agriculture, economic growth, environmentalism, environmental...
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Susan Swift was involved in the Abalone Alliance anti-nuclear efforts of the late 1970s and early 1980s. She was one of the only paid staffers during the lead-up to the big blockade and occupation of the PG&E Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant. She has also been involved in a variety of environmental and labor campaigns during the years.
Topics: ecology, anti-nuclear, Diablo Canyon, Abalone Alliance, economy, work
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An interview under the "Ecology Emerges" project of oral histories on the arc of environmentalism, ecology, environmental and social justice, running from the 1950s to the 2000s. Bill Evers was a founder of the California Planning & Conservation League, a member of the Bay Conservation and Development Commission and a long-time board member of the Greenbelt Alliance. His mother was a cofounder of the Marin Conservation League in the 1930s!
Topics: ecology, planning, conservation, Planning & Conservation League, Marin Conservation League,...
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Carlo Middione, who arrived in North Beach around 1958, describes his life during those early, inexpensive and carefree years...
Topics: North Beach, Italian, food, rent, housing, 1950s
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In the midst of the ongoing tech boom in the Bay Area, the biotech industry gets less attention than social media and “sharing” unicorns. What is going on with the push for “synthetic biology”? What are the implications for politics, manufacturing, medicine? Will the boundary between life and artifice persist? How do embedded paradigms reflect deeper assumptions about the structure of modern life? with Elliot Hosman, Pete Shanks , and Tito Jankowski .
Topics: Synthetic biology, ethics, bioethics, gender, DNA, red line, designer babies, human genome,...
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Bicycling, Immigration and Neoliberalism: Oscar Grande, organizer with PODER in the Mission, talks about the problems of bicycling politics, who speaks for bicycling, who actually bicycles and why, and how the issues surrounding class identity affects the broader environmental movements.
Topics: greenwashing, greenmail, neoliberalism, LEED standards, bicycling, immigration, equity, social...
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Touted by the tech industry as a way to preserve livelihoods in a time of automation replacing workers, Universal Basic Income (UBI) is not a new concept.  As a poverty alleviation idea, it has resonance in the EPIC program of 1930s California, and similar ideas were floated by leaders of social movements of the 1960s, including MLK, Jr. and the Black Panthers in their Ten Point Program. Through a discussion of UBI we take a look at the nature of work and classifying invisible work as work,...
Topics: Universal Basic Income, Negative Income Tax, EPIC, Black Panthers 10-point Program, economic...
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The San Francisco Poster Syndicate has been creating inspiring silkscreen posters at protests, demonstrations, street fairs, art events, and parties for the past decade or more. A steady stream of new participants has kept it fresh, and tonight we’ll hear from veterans and newbies alike. Art Hazelwood, Jos Sances, Lucia Ippolito, Joanna Ruckman , and Christopher Statton , and more!
Topics: posters, political posters, art and politics, free, silkscreening, demonstrations, public space,...
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Herb Mills, retired Secretary-Treasurer of ILWU Local 10, describes here the solidarity among longshoremen on the job which gives rise to moral actors, reinforcing an ethical system of mutual respect and mutual aid that was the underpinning of the longshore union during its heyday from the 1930s to the 1960s.
Topics: longshoremen, ILWU, morality, solidarity, cooperation, mutual aid
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A greeting from Bicis del Pueblo in San Francisco to the attendees of the World Bike Forum #7 in Lima, Peru, February 22-26, 2018.
Topics: bicycles, bikes, youth, talleres, workshops
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A "Walk and Talk," featuring Lew Springer (assoc. director of Natural Resources at the Presidio National Park) and Joel Pomerantz (thinkwalks.org and Seep City), along with Shaping San Francisco hosts LisaRuth Elliott and Chris Carlsson. We began at the Crissy Field restoration, and followed the watershed up through the recently opened Quartermaster Reach, Thompson Reach, YMCA Reach, MacArthur Meadow, then up Lover's Lane and the Goldsworthy "Tree Line" before returning to...
Topics: wetlands, riparian corridor, marshes, restoration, habitat, species, National Parks, Presidio,...
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During a Shaping San Francisco Public Talk on Storytelling and Memory Keepers, artist Susan Schwartzenberg describes the development and creation of the "Rosie The Riveter" national monument in Richmond, California.
Topics: World War II, Rosie the Riveter, women, women's work, liberty ships, Richmond, Kaiser shipyards
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Ruth Mahaney and Molly Martin, interviewed  in late 2018 and early 2019 respectively, remember early encounters with feminist bookstores and lesbian printing.
Topics: bookstores, printing presses, printshops, lesbians, gay, Modern Times
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Oscar Grande, organizer with PODER in the Mission, talks about the promises and perils of the organizing effort to create In Chan Kajaal park at 17th and Folsom. The interview took place before construction on the park had begun, but it is now open, as of Summer 2017.
Topics: parks, Recreation & Park Dept., immigration, Mayan, housing, organizing, public space
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Experimental filmmaker Greta Snider talks about gender behind the camera.
Topics: Snider, experimental, film, gender
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Hidden San Francisco : Book Release and Birthday! Join Shaping San Francisco’s Chris Carlsson on his 63rd birthday as he presents his new book, Hidden San Francisco: A Guide to Lost Landscapes, Unsung Heroes, and Radical Histories . After a quarter century of curating the digital archive at foundsf.org , and conducting bike and walking tours, this book captures the unique and serendipitous connections that course through Shaping San Francisco’s ongoing work.
Topics: history, historiography, San Francisco, guidebook, storytelling, narrative arc, digital media,...
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A silent bike ride around the top of Bayview Hill in San Francisco. Views to all directions, and a full circumnavigation of the upper road.
Topics: Bayview Hill, bicycling, views, San Francisco, Visitacion Valley, Hunter's Point
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Yolanda Lopez, 1942-2021, was a San Francisco artist and activist from San Diego originally, with roots in the San Francisco State College strike 1968-69. She went on to a long engagement with the Mission District community, co-founding Basta Ya! Newspaper in conjunction with the Committee to Defend Los Siete in 1970. Her art has come to be more recognized since her passing, with a major show in San Diego in late 2021. In this clip she discusses her beard, shaving, her use of Hormone...
Topics: beard, women's beards, women's hair, shaving, feminism, public health, doctors, women's health,...
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Animation showing Yosemite's Hetch Hetchy Valley before and after inundation, with a quote from John Muir
( 1 reviews )
Topics: John Muir, Hetch Hetchy, San Francisco water system
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Longtime activist Charlie Hinton describes his arrival in San Francisco in 1971 and his subsequent involvement in Left and Gay politics, including being a member of Bay Area Gay Liberation (BAGL) from its founding in 1975 to its dissolution in 1979. He also covers the role of labor organizing, the Coors boycott, UFW solidarity, and the San Francisco Teachers' Union efforts to establish a gay curriculum. With a strong focus on anti-imperialist political organizing, Hinton describes the...
Topics: BAGL, Gay, Lesbian, LGBTQ, Bay Area Gay Liberation, anti-imperialism, Chilean solidarity,...
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Andy Pollack came to San Francisco as a teen in the late 1960s and fell in with the Diggers for a time. Later he went to the New College Law School and became an alternative tax lawyer to hundreds. He was a director of The Farm in the early 1980s when it became a storied punk rock venue, he spent time in the far north of California at the infamous Black Bear compound (a Digger-ish back-to-the-land project), and much more... he has a unique perspective on what being "alternative" in...
Topics: underground, counterculture, hippies, pot, Diggers, New College, Law School, The Farm, punk rock,...
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A half dozen stairways, open spaces, and incredible views and gardens all across the upper slopes of Eureka Valley and Corbett Heights, above the Castro, and below Twin Peaks. Featuring histories and digressions from Chris Carlsson, occasional contributions from local neighborhood residents Grace Gellerman and Danny Grobani, and a host of friends who came along for the walk.
Topics: Eureka Valley, Corbett Heights, Al's Park, Falcon Street, Nobby Clarke's Folly, Clarke Mansion,...
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Chuck Wollenberg  presents his new book  Rebel Lawyer  about Wayne Collins and his defense of Japanese-American rights during and after WWII. Novelist and essayist  Karen Tei Yamashita  shares her introduction to John Okada’s  No-No Boy , the only 1950s novel to reflect on the post-Internment experience among Japanese-American families.
Topics: Japanese Internment, WWII, racism, anti-Asian racism, Chinese Exclusion Act, Japanese Exclusion,...
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Gopal Dayaneni  (Movement Generation)  and  Jason Mark  (editor,  Sierra Magazine ) discuss urbanity and ecological crisis from their ultra-local, regional, and national perspectives of environmental and ecological justice. The rights of nature, devolution, democratization, and distribution, capitalism and patriarchy, all come in for scrutiny in this wide-ranging discussion.
Topics: Cities, places, ecological justice, social justice, capitalism, patriarchy, decentralization,...
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Jason Mark, editor of Earth Island Journal and an active farmer at the Alemany Farm in San Francisco, interviewed as part of the Shaping San Francisco "Ecology Emerges" oral history project. The project documents participants in the ecology movement in the San Francisco Bay over the past 50 years.
Topics: ecology, Ecology Emerges, urban agriculture, economic growth, environmentalism, environmental...
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One of the interviews under the Shaping San Francisco "Ecology Emerges" oral history collection, tracing the arc from conservation to environmental justice, 1960s to the present. John Knox is the executive director of the Earth Island Institute, the third environmental organization founded by David Brower. EII is an incubator for dozens of other ecology activist organizations, and Knox has been at the epicenter of many of them since the early 1980s.
Topics: ecology, Ecology Emerges, environmental justice, Earth Island Institute, Friends of the Earth,...
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Silent footage from the Prelinger Archive, edited to focus on Chinatown, with a few seconds of Chinatown Telephone operators working their switchboards.
Topics: Chinatown, Telephone operators, switchboards, San Francisco, 1920s
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Kent Minault, an original Digger from San Francisco in the 1960s, describes the events at the beginning of 1967, starting with the Diggers' effort to critique and provoke the Human Be-In, then the emergence of the Artists Liberation Front, and gives a first-hand account of the epic Invisible Circus that took place at Glide Memorial Church in the Tenderloin.
Topics: Diggers, Be-In, Artists Liberation Front, ALF, Emmett Grogan, Peter Berg, Peter Coyote, Invisible...
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Former Redevelopment Agency official Carlo Middione describes working with Enid Sales and the effort to save old Victorians by moving them from one place to another in the A-1 and A-2 redevelopment projects in the 1960s.
Topics: Redevelopment Agency, Victorians, moving Victorians, architecture, preservation, Western Addition,...
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During the national marches against the NRA and the accelerating madness of mass shootings, San Franciscans turned out in large numbers to join the protest. This is at the corner of 7th and Market as demonstrators walked by for 4 minutes, but the entire length of the march took more than 45 minutes to pass... estimates put the crowd between 35,000 and 80,000... count them here!
Topics: guns, war, violence, mass shootings, protests, demonstrations, NRA, anti-NRA, National Rifle...
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The final Urban Forum: Walk n Talk of Spring 2022, we started at CCSF and heard from longtime Labor Studies chair Bill Shields, followed by Marcy Rein, co-author of the 2020 book Free City (PM Press). Then we walked through the historic installation near the MUNI turnaround, down Ocean Avenue, along Urbano to the Urbano Sundial, and ended at San Francisco State University where we heard from Katynka Martinez, chair of Latino/Latina Studies in the College of Ethnic Studies. Other stories...
Topics: CCSF, SFSU, accreditation, teachers unions, faculty strikes, San Francisco State strike, 1968-68,...
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Oscar Grande, longtime organizer at PODER, describes how his mother, a Salvadoran immigrant, worked at Levi's on Valencia for decades.
Topics: Levi's, immigrants, Salvadoran, El Salvador, seamstress, sewing, garment work, Excelsior
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Nina Serrano, longtime activist and poet, describes living in San Francisco during the 1965-67 period, raising her children in what was in fact a fairly utopian moment in history.
Topics: Summer of Love, Haight-Ashbury, hippies, freaks, revolution, culture, peace, love
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Oscar Grande, organizer with PODER, describes growing up in the Excelsior and how his family was so frugal that recycling all sorts of things was just common sense for them. Originally interviewed as part of the "Ecology Emerges" project of Shaping San Francisco in 2011.
Topics: recycling, reuse, frugality, Excelsior, Salvadoran, immigrants
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Public Art and Murals: Controversy, Neglect, Restoration Not always seen by all as a public benefit, public art faces sometimes quiet neglect, sometimes outrage and controversy. Earlier this year, San Francisco Poet Laureate  Kim Shuck  brought attention to the appeal to remove the Pioneer Monument’s “Early Days” statue of a subjugated and emaciated indigenous figure in Civic Center. Calling for a rehearing, she wrote a poem each day—55 in all—until the Board of Appeals granted one...
Topics: Indigenous California, Ohlone, public art, statues, murals, tagging, vandalism, community,...
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Summer 2014 campaign video to gain long-term sustainers to support the ongoing work of Shaping San Francisco, a vital public utility (though seldom recognized as such) that provides a living archive of San Francisco, and by the project's very existence, holds down an important niche in the local cultural ecology of the City. Walking and Bicycle history tours, Public Talks both live and archived online, and the ever-expanding archive at Foundsf.org are irreplaceable treasures of San Francisco's...
Topics: history, politics, ecology, tours, bicycles, walking, fundraising, support, sustainers, 3% Solution
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Women, Power, and the Vote:  1911 Suffrage to the 2018 Midterms Given the predictable buzz developing about the 2018 midterm elections and the predictions of a blue wave/a female wave, we want to convene a discussion rooted in history that can critically take on this frame of mind, especially in light of the recent election of London Breed and the likely re-election of Dianne Feinstein. It's not like we haven't had decades of powerful female politicians and leaders who have by and large done...
Topics: voting, elections, political power, grassroots, organizing, housing, race, gender, politicians,...
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John Knox, Executive Director of the Earth Island Institute in Berkeley, has been a resident of Noe Valley since the early 1970s. Here he describes some early community activism he was involved in and some of the old-timers he ran up against, as well as a funny anecdote about an awards ceremony with Mayor Moscone in City Hall.
Topics: Noe Valley, neighborhood association, community organizing, solar homes, 1970s solar energy,...
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Last year we embarked on a grand collaborative journey through the under-recognized LGBTQ+ history of North Beach with Seth Eisen’s OUT of Site performative walking tours. Seth returns with a look at his new SOMA tours coming in June and September, bringing forgotten queer histories and sites to life and exploring the intersections of labor history, the leather scene, bars, nightlife, and the immigrant experience.   This is part of a series of solo artists giving a behind-the-scenes and...
Topics: queer, two-spirit, gay, LGBTQ, history, walking tours, performance, historical tours, SOMA, Happy...
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Stan Weir, 1921-2001, was a longtime labor radical... called "Red" during his days as a longshoreman, he led 57 B-Men in a Kafkaesque struggle with Harry Bridges and the ILWU Executive Committee, after they were cashiered over breaking rules that had been developed secretly and imposed retroactively! Weir's many writings covered rank-and-file union politics, focusing on as he liked to put it, "unions that stay on the job." In this 2-hour 1997 interview/discussion with Chris...
Topics: rank-and-file, wildcat strikes, union democracy, hierarchy, unions that stay on the job, AFL-CIO,...
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Art & Politics:  Seth Eisen "OUT of Site" Seth Eisen and James Metzger and collaborators Colin Creveling, Rayan Hayes, Mary Vice, and Diego Gomez bring to life research and performance excerpts from Eye Zen Presents's newest project (a collaboration with Shaping SF)—a series of queer history performance-driven walking tours through the streets of San Francisco.  This performative talk explores the ways that queer people have historically created community, how our communities...
Topics: queer, gay, homosexual, essentialism, assimilationism, history, historiography, queer history,...
Shaping San Francisco - Audio Recordings
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Art & Politics:  Seth Eisen "OUT of Site" Seth Eisen and James Metzger and collaborators Colin Creveling, Rayan Hayes, Mary Vice, and Diego Gomez bring to life research and performance excerpts from Eye Zen Presents's newest project (a collaboration with Shaping SF)—a series of queer history performance-driven walking tours through the streets of San Francisco.    This performative talk explores the ways that queer people have historically created community, how our...
Topics: queer, gay, homosexual, history, historiography, assimiliationism, essentialism, Cockettes, Charles...
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The Maritime Museum at Aquatic Park recently underwent extensive renovation, bringing to public view murals and sculptures from the WPA that have long been hidden and overlooked. Other beautiful artworks grace public buildings throughout the East Bay and San Francisco, including Coit Tower, and on Treasure Island, where Maritime Museum artists went on to create work for the Golden Gate International Exposition in 1939. Join  Richard Everett  (Maritime Museum),  Anne Schnoebelen  (Treasure...
Topics: New Deal, art, architecture, WPA, PWA, murals, Diego Rivera, SF Arts Association, San Francisco Art...
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Former SDS activist Bruce Hartford describes how the local chapter at San Francisco State College created a game called "Americana" on the commons prior to the big strike in 1968. A Shaping San Francisco interview conducted by LisaRuth Elliott and shot by Chris Carlsson in June 2011.
Topics: San Francisco State, 1968, SDS, anti-war, 60s, Sixties, alienation, student movement