Plenary Schedule

From College8CoreWiki

The Plenary is a weekly meeting (Monday evening) in which all the sections of the Core course come together to hear presentations and discuss issues. The class meets in the Media Theater (M110)map. Note that each week's talk has a reading and homework (see Syllabus Supplement) that must be completed before the session so that you can get maximum usefulness. If you have trouble accessing an online reading, email pmmckerc@ucsc.edu.

Schedule of Plenary Lectures 2014

Slides and audio.

Week 0 (Weds 6 pm 10/1) Classroom Unit 1: Introduction to the Core Course. Speaker: Ronnie Lipschutz. Reading: Rachel Carson (bio background), Silent Spring; Commoner(bio background), and “The Closing Circle” (course reader)(online).

Week 1 (Mon. 10/6 Media Theater 7 pm): Writing to avoid the humiliation of silence in the face of cruelty and injustice. Speaker: Conn Hallinan. Reading: “The Writing Classroom as a Laboratory for Democracy—An Interview with Don Rothman” (see 2013 below for more background on Don) at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/6dc670cd-0e7e-4bd2-b387-a4ef9f8801a4/Writing_Classroom_as_Lab.pdf.

Week 2 (10/13 Media Theater): California, the Promised Land, but not always welcoming one. Speaker: Ronnie Lipschutz. Reading: Don Mitchell, The Lie of the Land (Minnesota, 1996), chapter 1, at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/6dc670cd-0e7e-4bd2-b387-a4ef9f8801a4/Lie_of_the_Land_Migrant_Workers_and_the_California_Landscape_26_to_48.pdf in eCommons Resources(alt link).

Week 3 (10/20): California Natural Histories & Historical Ecologies. Speaker: Robin Grossinger, San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI). Reading: “What is Historical Ecology,” SFEI, at: http://www.sfei.org/programs/what-historical-ecology; Eric Van Dyke & Kerstin Wasson, “Historical Ecology of a Central California Estuary: 150 years of Habitat Change,” Estuaries 28, #2 (April 2005): 173-89, at: http://www.elkhornslough.org/tidalwetland/downloads/VanDykeWasson2005.pdf (alt link).

Saturday, Oct. 18, 9 AM- 4 PM: Sustainability Subbotnik (this is your service learning work experience; see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subbotnik) & the Syllabus Supplement.

Week 4 (10/27): An Environmental History—California as shaped by human action Speaker: Linda Ivey, Cal State East Bay Reading: Worster, “Dust Bowl” & “Hydraulic Society in California” (reader)

Week 5 (11/3): Food: Who harvests? Who benefits? Who pays? Speaker: Ann Lopez, Center for Farmworker Families, Watsonville. Reading: Lopez, “Farmworkers in Central California’s Corporate Agribusiness” (in course reader). Also Protecting Their Potential and NAFTA and Immigration.

Week 6: (11/10): Food (in)justice and Food Security in California Speaker:Maya Salsedo, Planting Justice, Oakland, CA Reading: “Meeting Maya,” at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/6dc670cd-0e7e-4bd2-b387-a4ef9f8801a4/Meeting%20Maya.pdf(alt link); M. Pia Chaparro, et al., “Nearly Four Million Californians are Food Insecure,” Health Policy Brief, UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, June 2012, at: http://cfpa.net/CalFresh/Media/CHIS-HealthPolicyBrief-2012.pdf.

Week 7: (11/17): California & Climate Change Speaker: Melanie Fitzpatrick, Union of Concerned Scientists, Oakland Reading: “Our Changing Climate 2012,” at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/6dc670cd-0e7e-4bd2-b387-a4ef9f8801a4/CEC-500-2012-007.pdf(altlink); S.-Y. Wang, et al,” “Probable causes of the abnormal ridge accompanying the 2013-2014 California Drought,” Geophysical Research Letters 41 (May 2014): 3220-26., at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/bc24f6e8-33af-4e18-8bf7-3bd8e618864e/Wang.pdf. alt link1 altlink

Week 8 (11/24): Water in California Speaker: Katie Monsen, Environmental Studies & Electrical Engineering, UCSC Reading: David Carle. “The Distribution System,” pp. 85-131 in: Introduction to Water in California, Berkeley: UC Press, 2004, at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/bc24f6e8-33af-4e18-8bf7-3bd8e618864e/Calwater.pdf (altlink); Derrick Jensen, “Forget Shorter Showers,” Orion (July/Aug. 2009) (course reader)

Week 9 (12/1): The Falcon Story Speaker: Glenn Stewart, Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group Reading: Ratcliffe, “Man, the Dominant Animal” & “The Pesticide Story” (course reader); Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group, at: http://www2.ucsc.edu/scpbrg/

Week 10 (12/8): UCSC as a living lab for sustainability Speaker: Panel discussion Reading: “Campus Sustainability Plan, 2013-2016,” at: http://sustainability.ucsc.edu/governance/files/CSP_2013_2016.pdf.


Schedule of Plenary Lectures 2013

Webcasts of the CLEI 81A plenary lectures are available at http://itunes2.ucsc.edu/rss_feeds/clei81a.xml.

Week 0 (9/25): Introduction to the Core Course Speaker: Ronnie Lipschutz Reading: Carson, Rachel Silent Spring excerpt and Commoner, Barry The Closing Circle: the Ecosphere (both in course reader). alt link.

Week 1 (10/2): “Writing to avoid the humiliation of silence in the face of cruelty and injustice” Speaker: Edgar Ontiveros, College 8 alum and Conn Hallinan, UC emeritus Reading: “The Writing Classroom as a Laboratory for Democracy—An Interview with Don Rothman", his views on writing and democracy. Don's 2011 plenary talk (video).

Week 2 (10/9): California as the Promised Land, not always welcoming to those who seek its fruits.
Speaker: Ronnie Lipschutz Originally schedules: Saving California’s coast & avoiding New Jersey’s fate Speaker: Steve Blank, Entrepreneur & former member Calif. Coastal Commission Reading: Blank, “In Defense of Unreasonableness”; Blank, ; “Going Out with his Boots on”; Coastal Commission Brochure, ; Nutter, “CA’s Coastal Commission”; Seabrook, “The Beach Builders” (reader)

Week 3 (10/16): "Why The Grapes of Wrath matters today" Susan Shillinglaw, English, San Jose State and Center for Steinbeck Studies, author of Journey into Steinbeck's California Springsteen's "Ghost of Tom Joad". Reading: Worster, Dust Bowl: Sanders, “Learning from the Prairie” (course reader).

Saturday, Oct. 19, 9 AM- 4 PM: Sustainability Project Subbotnik (see p. 7) (this is your service learning work experience; see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subbotnik).

Week 4 (10/23): "How Food Works--and Who Works for Food." This talk will cover physics, chemistry, biology, engineering and economics, among other topics, and will also address the role of labor and energy in producing and consuming food. I'd still like you to read Don Mitchell's introductory chapter from The Lie of the Land, but it is pretty slow going, and we won't hold you responsible for it. Instead (or in addition), please read the following articles from the course reader:

Steve Gliessman UCSC, "The Need for Sustainable Food Production Systems," pp. 69-88

I Perfecto & C. Badgley, "Can Organic Agriculture Feed the World?" pp. 167-170

J.P. Reganold, et al., "Transforming U.S. Agriculture," pp. 211-212.

B. Yeoman, "Fork in the Road," pp. 339-346.

Optional Reading: Don Mitchell, The Lie of the Land--migrant workers and the California landscape (Minnesota, 1996) (password required) or http://site.ebrary.com/lib/ucsc/docDetail.action?docID=10151117.

Week 5 (10/30): "Food: Who harvests? Who benefits? Who pays?" Speaker: Ann Lopez, Center for Farmworker Families, Watsonville. Reading: Lopez, “Farmworkers in Central California’s Corporate Agribusiness” (course reader). NEW NAFTA (eCommons pdf) alt link (word doc).

Week 6: (11/6): "Food (in)justice in California" Speaker: Maya Salsedo, Santa Cruz Food Justice Advocate, Brower Youth Award. Reading: “Meeting Maya,” at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/6dc670cd-0e7e-4bd2-b387-a4ef9f8801a4/Meeting%20Maya.pdf (pdf) www w/ links NEW Growing Youth and SNAP.

Week 7: (11/13): "The falcon story" Speaker: Glenn Stewart, College 8 & Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group Reading: Ratcliffe, “Man, the Dominant Animal” & “The Pesticide Story” (course reader); Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group, at: http://www2.ucsc.edu/scpbrg/

Week 8 (11/20): Force Majeure in California—Climate change Speaker: Helen & Newton Harrison, Digital Arts & New Media (DANM), UCSC. View before: http://youtu.be/BgsFnRzGrJY. Reading: “Our Changing Climate 2012,” at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/6dc670cd-0e7e-4bd2-b387-a4ef9f8801a4/CEC-500-2012-007.pdf; Center for Force Majeure Studies, UCSC (please read entire website), at: http://artsresearch.ucsc.edu/force-majeure. UCSC DANM talk: ,"On Mixing, Mapping, and Territory."

Week 9 (11/27): Thanksgiving—no plenary

Week 10 (12/4): Force Majeure in California—Climate change Speaker: please read: Helen & Newton Harrison, Digital Arts & New Media (DANM), UCSC. View before: http://youtu.be/BgsFnRzGrJY. Reading: “Our Changing Climate 2012,” at: https://ecommons.ucsc.edu/access/content/group/6dc670cd-0e7e-4bd2-b387-a4ef9f8801a4/CEC-500-2012-007.pdf; Center for Force Majeure Studies, UCSC (please read entire website), at: http://artsresearch.ucsc.edu/force-majeure.

Postponed: UCSC as a living lab for sustainability Speaker: Various campus representatives Reading: “Campus Sustainability Plan, 2013-2016,” at: http://sustainability.ucsc.edu/governance/files/CSP_2013_2016.pdf


Fall 2012

Week 0 (Monday 9/24 2-4 pm): Introduction to the Core Course. Reading: Carson, Silent Spring, in the course reader. (Please do not use for first homework due 10/3).

Week 1 (10/3): Environmental Crisis: Planet, People, Provision. (Slides). Reading: Callenbach, Ecotopia (Banyan Tree/Heyday Books edition), especially pp. 1-23; 38-47; 89-94; 102-06; 109-12; 122-32; 169-72.

Week 2 (10/10): How does food work? Food doing work. Working on food (Slides)and (slides plus audio). Reading: McDonough & Braungart, “Waste Equals Food.”

Week 3 (10/17): Why Grapes of Wrath Matters Today. slides and audio) Susan Shillinglaw, English, San Jose State and Center for Steinbeck Studies, author of Journey into Steinbeck's California. Reading: Worster, Dust Bowl.

Week 4 (10/24): Avoiding the humiliation of silence in the face of cruelty and injustice. Don Rothman,(Update) Emeritus, Writing Program, UCSC Reading: Miller, “Divided We Eat.” (slides and audio)

Week 5 (10/31): Food Systems & Food Justice. David Bacon, California writer & photographer (slideshow). Reading: Lopez, “Farmworkers in Central California’s Corporate Agribusiness.” (Slides and audio)

Week 6: (11/7): Food and Population Dr.Jade Sasser, Women’s Studies, Loyola Marymount University Reading: Petroni, "An Ethical Approach to Population and Climate Change " (also in eCommons). alt link. Slides and audio)

Week 7: (11/14): Sustainability & the Future (Ronnie; Winter & Spring Core Instructors) (slides and audio)PPT slides in eCommons. Reading: Lipschutz, “Sustainability as a Social Project” (on-line PDF)

Week 8: Thanksgiving, no plenary

Week 9 (11/28): Global warming Dr. Susanne Moser, Susanne Moser Research & Consulting, Santa Cruz Moser, Ekstrom & Franco, “Our Changing Climate 2012” eCommons (on-line PDF) corrected 11/16. alt link

Week 10 (12/5): Note change: Irene Reti, Regional archivist at McHenry, who will speak on "Cultivating a Movement: An Oral History Series on Sustainable Agriculture and Organic Farming on California's Central Coast" (see here) Kirstin Yogg from Freewheelin' Farms who will address what is involved in organic farming; and Fran Grayson, of Truckstop & Avanti, who will talk about procuring organic foods for said enterprises. Reading: Blatt, “Genetically Modified Food: Food Fights among Adults.”

  • Lectures by Ronnie Lipschutz, unless otherwise noted.


Fall 2011

Tues. 4 pm 9/27: Introduction Ravi Rajan, Provost, College Eight. Reading: Spinks, “Refusing to Bend” (reader). Optional reading (do not use for homework): Leo Babauta Focus: A Simplicity Manifesto in the Age of Distraction Download.

10/4: Why Grapes of Wrath Matters Today
Susan Shillinglaw, English, San Jose State and National Steinbeck Center, author of Journey into Steinbeck's California. Reading: Worster, “Hydraulic Society” (reader)

10/11: Avoiding the Humiliation of Silence in the Face of Cruelty and Injustice. VIDEO. Many students said this was a highlight of the course. Image 1 not a pipe Image 2 Don Rothman, UC Santa Cruz. Reading: Griffin, “Convergence” (reader)

10/18: Global Warming: Up Close and Personal
Susanne Moser, UC Santa Cruz. Reading: Moser, et al, “The Future Is Now” (reader). Books she recommended: Moral Ground: Ethical Action for a Planet in Peril, Blessed Unrest and Requiem for a Species.

10/19: Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between the Rich and the Poor in an Interconnected World by Jacqueline Novogratz. Students are strongly encouraged to attend this What’s Next Lecture, co-sponsored by College Eight, 7:30 pm at the UCSC Music Center Recital Hall (between College 8 and McHenry Library). Reading: Blue Sweater Prologue and (optional) Chapter 13

10/25: No Plenary

11/1: Green Fire: Aldo Leopold and a Land Ethic for Our Time Film Screening, followed by Q&A with its producers. Reading: (Choose one) Leopold, "A Biotic View of the Land" (on wiki, password required) Or Sanders, “Learning From the Prairie” (reader). Not required, but speaker will refer to "The Conservation Ethic" and Heilbronner "Growth and Survival". (wiki)

11/8: The Idea of Sustainability Steve Gliessman, UC Santa Cruz. Reading: Gliessman, “The Need for Sustainable Food Production Systems” (reader) missing pages from reader or full article.

11/15: Rajan on Human Rights. Postponed: The Politics of Population Jade Sasser, UC Berkeley. Reading: Petroni, Suzanne "An Ethical Approach to Population and Climate Change " (on wiki, password required)

11/22: New Frontiers Faculty from the Departments of Electrical Engineering, Earth and Planetary Sciences, and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.
Ken Pedrotti, Professor of Electrical Engineering, UCSC John Vesecky, Professor of Electrical Engineering, UCSC, Patrick Chuang, Earth and Planetary Sciences. Reading: (Choose one) Lents and Kelly, “Clearing the Air in Los Angeles” Or Amory Lovins, “More Profit With Less Carbon" (alt download)

11/29: Concluding Remarks Ravi Rajan.



Fall 2010


Sept. 22 Weds 1-2:45 pm, CRU II map, Introduction to the class, Provost Rajan

Sept. 28 Tuesday, 4–5:45 pm, Classroom Unit II. "The Environment and Us: An Introduction", Provost Rajan

Oct. 5 "Why Grapes of Wrath Matters Today"
Susan Shillinglaw, English, San Jose State and National Steinbeck Center, author of Journey into Steinbeck's California.
Reading: Paul Wartzman Obscene in the Extreme: The Burning and Banning of The Grapes of Wrath Ch. 1. Optional: Ch. 3 on Steinbeck's reaction. (Excerpts from whole book).

Oct. 12 "Agriculture, the Environment, and Justice in the Central Coast: A case study of The Grapes of Wrath in contemporary times,"
Linda Ivey, Assistant Professor and Public History Coordinator at CSU East Bay.
Reading: Nash "The Fruits of Ill Health: Pesticides and Workers' Bodies in Post-World War II California" (alternate download site).

Oct. 19 "Environmental Justice," Ravi Rajan Reading: "Bhopal: Vulnerability, Routinization and Chronic Disaster" download. Additional background information on Bhopal.

Oct. 26 "The Idea of Sustainability,"
Steve Gliessman, UCSC. Reading: "The Need for Sustainable Food Systems"

Nov. 2 "Climate Change in California: Up Close & Personal,"
Susanne Moser, Susanne Moser Research & Consulting and UCSC. Reading: "History of California's Climate Change Activities" (website)

Nov. 9 "On Population," Jade Sasser, UC Berkeley.
Reading: Hartmann "10 Reasons Why Population Control is not the Solution to Global Warming", Hart "Treading on Taboo," and Petroni "An Ethical Approach to Population and Climate Change "

Nov. 16 "Conservation" Ingrid Parker, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, UCSC.
Patrick Chuang, Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences, UCSC.
Reading: "How Can LA Adapt to Climate Change?" and "Introduced Species Policy, Management, and Future Research Needs"

Nov. 23 "Clean Tech and an Intro to C8 81C".
Ken Pedrotti, Professor of Electrical Engineering, UCSC John Vesecky, Professor of Electrical Engineering, UCSC,
Ali Shakouri, Professor of Electrical Engineering, UCSC. Reading: Carbon Plan and Environmental Solutions

Nov. 30 Closing lecture, Provost Rajan


2009 Schedule


9/23: Introduction
Ravi Rajan, Provost, College Eight

9/29: Why Grapes of Wrath Matters Today
Susan Shillinglaw, English, San Jose State and National Steinbeck Center Journey into Steinbeck's California

10/6: The Environment and Human Rights
Ravi Rajan(Biography) will be speaking about the environment and Human Rights, including Environmental Justice.

10/13: Environmental Justice: the Case of the Silicon Valley
Sheila Davis, Executive Director, Valley Toxics Coalition

10/20: Conservation Science and Planetary Survival
Ingrid Parker, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, UCSC Patrick Chuang, Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences, UCSC

10/27: The Politics of Food
Patricia Allen, Director Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems link, UCSC

11/3: Global Warming: Up Close and Personal
Susanne Moser, Research Associate, UCSC

11/10: The Future of Water
Brent Haddad, Professor of Environmental Studies, UCSC

11/17: Risk and Disasters
Ravi Rajan

11/24: Engineering for a Greener World
Ken Pedrotti, Professor of Electrical Engineering, UCSC John Vesecky, Professor of Electrical Engineering, UCSC

12/1: Concluding Remarks
Ravi Rajan


For reference, previous plenaries