Protesters gathered near the gates of Sproul Plaza on the Cal campus, carrying signs and chanting a phrase reverberating around the country: “Black lives matter.” The crowd swelled as it headed away from campus to downtown, where, by 6:30, demonstrators lay down and blocked the street.
Austin has South by Southwest, Aspen has its Ideas Festival, TED talks have popped up everywhere, and Berkeley has Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas. The festival, to be held this Friday and Saturday, will feature nationally recognized thinkers in talks, forum discussions and workshops on pressing topics—including the Black Lives Matter movement, globalized education, drones, and of course, whether Gwyneth Paltrow is wrong about everything (no, we’re not kidding, that’s actually a talk on the schedule).
Posted on October 14, 2015 - 4:10pm
Science tells us that race is in our heads, not in our genes; it’s all a social construct.
It’s an observation that seems to illuminate everything and nothing at once. It makes it sound so arbitrary and trivial—a trick of the mind. And yet history tells us that race has mattered enormously. And the news emphasizes how much it still matters today in terms of what researchers call “life outcomes”: Your chances of securing a loan, for example; or of getting a good education; or of being shot by the police.