Global Urban Humanities Initiative (GUH)


Meet the 2020 Global Urban Humanities Fellows

We are pleased to announce our Spring 2020 Global Urban Humanities Fellows. Eight graduate student and faculty fellows were selected for their research on contemporary and historical cities and come from departments throughout the UC Berkeley campus, including Architecture, Art History, English, Geography, Italian Studies, Music, and Spanish & Portuguese. They will meet regularly in Spring 2020 to discuss their current research projects. More

Congratulations to the 2019 GUH Certificate Graduates

This year, we have 19 graduate and undergraduate students who completed the GUH Certificate. They come from departments and programs including American Studies, Architecture, Art History, Art Practice, Economics, English, Geography, Global Studies, Urban Design and Urban Studies. Their research in site-based studio courses that included travel to places including Lagos and New Orleans produced new knowledge about urban life by combining methods from the humanities and the design disciplines. Visit the 2019 Graduate and Undergraduate Certificate Participants pages to read about the graduates. Pictures here

TED Talk featuring Ron Rael on Reimagining the US-Mexico Border Wall

What is a border? It's a line on a map, a place where cultures mix and merge in beautiful, sometimes violent and occasionally ridiculous ways. And a border wall? An overly simplistic response to that complexity, says Architecture Professor and GUH Faculty Ronald Rael. In a moving, visual talk, Rael reimagines the physical barrier that divides the United States and Mexico -- sharing satirical, serious works of art inspired by the borderlands and showing us the border we don't see in the news. "There are not two sides defined by a wall. This is one landscape, divided," Rael says. This talk is also the topic of the Spring 2018 GUH Studio Borderwall Urbanism co-taught by Ron Rael and Stephanie Syjuco. Watch

Spring 2020 Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Research Studio Course: East Bay

This course delves into the history of the East Bay in the 1960s and 1970s, with particular attention to the emergence of countercultural and social-movement communities. In this project-oriented course, students will work in teams as they reconstruct and analyze particular sites of protest and culture-making across the East Bay, from Berkeley to Emeryville and Oakland. This course is taught by Greg Castillo (Architecture) and Scott Saul (English) and listed as AMERSTD H110/ED 190. More

Spring 2020 Graduate Interdisciplinary Research Studio Course: Berlin

Since the Fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, Berlin has intertwined its urban renewal with landscapes of reconciliation and commemoration. The "New Berlin" that politicians imagined in the 1990s was to be forged by international investment, materialized in high-profile commissions to "starchitects," alongside preservation and memorialization of the city's past, often seen through the seemingly inevitable lens of the Holocaust, and more recently Colonialism. Yet the relationship between developing a European metropolis and preserving sites of memory is troubled, making Berlin the archetype of the contemporary guilt environment.  This course is taught by Lauren Kroiz (Art History) and Andrew Shanken (Architecture) and listed as ARCH 209/HISTART 290. More