Free Public Talks
Wednesday evenings 7:30-9:30 unless otherwise noted.
At Eric Quezada Center for Culture and Politics, 518 Valencia Street near 16th Street, in San Francisco
A place to meet and talk unmediated by corporations, official spokespeople, religion, political parties, or dogma.
Download the Fall 2016 calendar as a pdf.
Archive of past talks
Online audio archive of past talks, listed by type:
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The Housing Crisis and The Growth Consensus:
What's Wrong with this Picture?
The housing crisis continues to wreak havoc across the Bay Area. Political leaders and planners all agree—growth is inevitable, and to many, desirable. We bring together three sharp critics of the local political establishment and its loony-tune fantasies of endless growth and trickle-down solutions. The hidden power grab in the consolidation of regional government—and the endless manipulations by the banking sector and local zoning rules—continue to throw thousands into penury and homelessness as the inevitable foundation beneath our much publicized “prosperity.”
With Zelda Bronstein (48hills.com), Darwin Bond-Graham (East Bay Express), and Jennifer Friedenbach (Coalition on Homelessness)
photo: Fire destroyed this (now-demolished) building in January 2015; what will be built here? by Chris Carlsson
The common wild species in cities—pigeons, dandelions, snails—are at best unloved. But writer Nathanael Johnson and artist Mona Caron ask us to give our attention to the urban wilderness. Learning to truly see our nonhuman neighbors can make life richer, and might just be the first step in more complex understandings of the wild and of ourselves in nature. Jason Mark (Sierra editor) moderates.
Co-hosted by Nature in the City
photo: Snails fill this vacant lot in Mission Bay, by LisaRuth Elliott
Divided We Fall:
Immigration and Scapegoating
Moments of hysteria in history have shaped our feelings toward immigration—either on a local or global scale—from anti-Chinese sentiments leading to decades of the Exclusion Act to events like Pearl Harbor and 9/11, to witnessing thousands of unaccompanied children arriving from Central America, we discuss the increase in security and scapegoating within our borders toward immigrant groups who become associated with these events. Lara Kiswani (Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC)), Grant Din (Angel Island Immigration Station), and author Bill Ong Hing (USF Law School) who has written extensively on immigration, take us back in time and up to the present to look at detention, deportation, and communities defending against persecution becoming policy.
photo: Immigrants arrive on Angel Island, courtesy California State Parks
Shaping San Francisco is fiscally sponsored by Independent Arts & Media, a California non-profit corporation.