Divisions & Units - Arts & Humanities

Alumnus’ ‘Dreamers’ oratorio inspired by Berkeley undocumented students

March 13, 2019

The world premiere of composer Jimmy López’s oratorio “Dreamers” — a work informed by interviews with undocumented students at UC Berkeley — will be performed at Zellerbach Hall on Sunday, March 17. López, 40, received his Ph.D. in music from Berkeley in 2012, and recently talked with Berkeley News about becoming a composer, his time on campus, and how he created this large-scale composition for orchestra and voices.

I’m Asian-American. Affirmative Action Worked for Me.

February 9, 2019

Young Jean Lee, a playwright, director and filmmaker, credits affirmative action for getting her into Berkeley in 1992, changing her life for the better.

Two honored with Faculty Service Awards

February 5, 2019

Ignacio Navarrete, a professor of Spanish and Portuguese, was one of two faculty members honored with UC Berkeley’s prestigious 2019 Berkeley Faculty Service Award. The award recognizes “outstanding and dedicated service to the campus . . . {that has} significantly enhanced the quality of the campus as an educational institution and community of scholars.”"

Arts & Humanities

Anthony CascardiFrom ancient times to the present day, people around the globe have raised fundamental questions about life through the arts, literature and philosophy. In the Arts & Humanities Division, faculty and students explore the human experience across an exceptionally broad range of subjects.

Ariel Bloch, a pioneer in the fusion of Arab and Hebrew studies, dies at 85

January 9, 2019

Ariel Bloch, who used his career at UC Berkeley as a way to fuse Arab and Hebrew culture, died in Richmond on Dec. 14 at the age of 85 after a lengthy illness. A professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies, Bloch specialized in Arabic linguistics, but he took on Hebrew and Aramaic as subspecialties and did what he could to encourage a multilingual balance of both of the languages and the cultures.

Meet our new faculty: Maria Sonevytsky, ethnomusicology

November 27, 2018

Maria Sonevytsky, who received her Ph.D. from Columbia, is joining the faculty as an assistant professor of ethnomusicology.

Exploring the history of what might have been earns Gallagher the Jacques Barzun Prize

November 27, 2018

The American Philosophical Society awarded English professor emerita Catherine Gallagher the 2018 Jacques Barzun Prize in Cultural History for her book, Telling It Like It Wasn’t: The Counterfactual Imagination in History and Fiction. She received the award in a ceremony in Philadelphia earlier this month. The book explores counterfactualism, the study of things that never happened and wondering what would have happened if they did.

Vanished no more: Giant of photography Roman Vishniac finds a home at The Magnes

November 20, 2018

UC Berkeley's The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life has acquired the collection of photographer Roman Vishniac, who documented many of the most important events of the 20th century. Vishniac almost single-handedly preserved our concepts of Jewish life in pre-World War II Eastern Europe. After the war, he would go on to photograph the destruction and rebuilding of Germany and life in the early days of the Baby Boom in New York and its Chinatown.

Anthony Newcomb, noted musicologist, dies at 77

November 20, 2018

UC Berkeley dean and professor emeritus Anthony Newcomb passed away peacefully at his home on Sunday, November 18th in Berkeley. A widely-respected music scholar, Newcomb’s research focused on vocal music of the Renaissance and early Baroque eras, and later the ontological connections between Wagner and 18th and 19th-century instrumental works.

Carillonist’s composition played at Matthew Shepard memorial service in D.C.

October 26, 2018

Compositions by University Carillonist Jeff Davis and former University Carillonist Ronald Barnes were played for the thousands who flooded Washington National Cathedral for a service celebrating the life of Matthew Shepard, the 21-year-old whose murder 20 years ago in Wyoming became a potent symbol of anti-gay bigotry.