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Free Public Talks
September-December 2014

A place to meet and talk unmediated by corporations, official spokespeople, religion, political parties, or dogma.

All events are free, on Wednesday evenings unless otherwise noted.
At Eric Quezada Center for Culture and Politics, 518 Valencia, near 16th Street, San Francisco. Download a pdf of our Fall 2014 calendar (2 mb) from here.

Incite.../Insight! Free Film Events

We are proud to announce a collaboration between Shaping San Francisco, The New Nothing Cinema, and the Anthropology and Social Change Department at C.I.I.S. We will screen a film once a month with the focus being on local activism and political history. Held monthly at New Nothing Cinema, 16 Sherman Alley (near Folsom and 7th), on Thursdays September-December 2014.

Archive of past talks

Online audio archive of past talks, listed by type:

Partly underwritten by City Lights Foundation and Rainbow Grocery with support from The Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

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If just 3% of our over 35,000 monthly users give $10/month, we can keep our vital public resource going--the living archive of San Francisco history at FoundSF.org. Give today, and get MORE history!

September 10, 2014
The Evolving Eastern Shoreline

Shaping San Francisco's Chris Carlsson provides an historic tour of the eastern shoreline from its days as tidal mudflats and open sewers crisscrossed by piers and wharves to its new incarnation as a site of ecological restoration and recreation. Literacy for Environmental Justice (LEJ) presents a plan to revitalize Candlestick shoreline.

September 24, 2014
No Future at College?!?

A discussion among adjunct faculty (aka temp teachers), City College of San Francisco advocates and defenders, and Student Debt activists—how to understand the current neoliberal-imposed crisis in higher education, and what is a future worth fighting for? with Joe Berry of COCAL, an adjunct from the recent unionizing success at the San Francisco Art Institute, and TBA.

October 1, 2014
A History of LGBTQ Activist Spaces… Where you Least Expect Them

At the outset of the LGBTQ History Month of October, a group of distinguished historians come together to orient us to queer historic sites and events in the city. They will reflect on a list of places that have been torn down and what it means that these centers of community are missing, and will present a sampling of the many significant and diverse spaces that are still extant, and why these places are critical components of LGBTQ history. The presentation will also showcase the work going into the Citywide Historic Context Statement for LGBTQ History, a planning document that will serve as a guide in the documentation and commemoration of LGBTQ places in San Francisco. With Glenne McElhinney, Gerard Koskovich, Shayne Watson, Donna Graves

October 8, 2014
Making History by Making Maps

Nicole Gluckstern and Burrito Justice trace the lines of their literary history mapping project and map-making, and are joined by historical geographer Dick Walker with his fantastic “State of California” atlas.

October 29, 2014
San Francisco’s Housing Wars 2014

Decades of displacement and eviction have reached another crescendo during 2013-14. Key activists from the 1990s to the present will share tactics and strategies as the war enters its latest stages. James Tracy with his new book Dispatches Against Displacement with Erin McElroy of the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project and Maria Zamudio of Causa Justa and TBA.

November 5, 2014
Trees and History

Jared Farmer presents his book “Trees in Paradise,” reading California history through Redwoods/Sequoias, Palms, Citrus, and Eucalyptus, and he is joined by Craig Dawson of the Sutro Stewards, a group dedicated to untangling San Francisco’s most fraught forest atop Mt. Sutro.

November 12, 2014
Art & Politics: Janet Delaney
A Photographic History of South of Market

Janet Delaney has been documenting the changing South of Market since its days as a recently deindustrialized district in the early 1970s to its present boom in luxury residential towers.

December 3, 2014
Tunneling San Francisco Then and Now: Where’s the Public Interest?

A discussion of the west side tunnels and MUNI expansion in the 1910s, simultaneous to the building of the Hetch Hetchy water and power system by Elizabeth Creely and Catherine Powell, with Tim Redmond to compare today’s infrastructure build-out (Central Subway, sewers, rebuilding Hetch Hetchy aqueduct).

December 10, 2014
Latin American Social Movements

Clif Ross and Marcy Rein, editors of Until the Rulers Obey: Voices from Latin American Social Movements present a broad overview of the social movements that have pressured one regime after another in Latin America, changing the political calculations for everyone from right to left, from Venezuela to Argentina, Mexico to Chile and more. Co-hosted by PM Press