Divisions & Units - Arts & Humanities

Three L&S alumni win MacArthur 'genius' awards

October 11, 2017
Three L&S alumni are among the 24 amazing Americans revealed today as winners of the coveted MacArthur “genius” award. Writer Viet Than Nguyen and opera director Yuval Sharon are both alumni of the Department of English, and conceptual artist Trevor Paglen has a BA in Religious Studies and a Ph.D. in Geography.

Inside Rainbow Sign, a vibrant hub for black cultural arts

September 19, 2017
From the outside, Rainbow Sign didn’t look like much. Housed in a modest building it sat on the corner of Grove (now MLK Jr. Way) and Derby in Berkeley, a quiet, beige house with a tasteful, arched doorway. But on the inside was a vibrant black cultural arts center that drew cultural icons from across the country. The all-inclusive space caught the attention of UC Berkeley students Tessa Rissacher and Max Lopez. Together, they decided to go digging through archives to unearth the legacy of the multipurpose venue as part of a digital history project for an undergraduate seminar, taught by professor Scott Saul, on the city of Berkeley’s transformation in the late 1960s and 1970s.

Fall brings a brimming arts cornucopia to campus

September 14, 2017
Fall at UC Berkeley always arrives with an air of anticipation and this year follows suit, with an exhilarating lineup of events ranging from readings by award-winning poets, a student art exhibition on authority, chats with cartoonists, an adaptation of a classical play complete with a cloud structure and the holiday favorite, The Hard Nut.

L&S alumna Alice Waters on free speech and the making of a counterculture cook

September 6, 2017
One of the College of Letters & Science's best-known alumnae approaches her story with reluctance. So the famed restaurateur, who co-founded Chez Panisse restaurant and began a revolution in American food, says in an interview announcing her appearance tomorrow at the Free Speech Cafe.

Robert Goldman wins World Sanskrit Award for 2017

September 6, 2017
Renowned Sanskrit scholar Robert P. Goldman has been honored with the World Sanskrit Award for 2017 by the Indian Council on Cultural Relations (ICCR) for his work on Sanskrit language and literature and for the completion — under his direction — of the seven-volume, 5,000-page translation and annotation of the monumental Sanskrit epic poem the Rāmāyaṇa of Vālmīki.

Pianist found his path at Berkeley, returns to lead Ojai music fest

June 15, 2017
When Vijay Iyer came to UC Berkeley in the early 1990s, he didn’t know he would go on to become what the New Yorker referred to as “the most lauded piano player in jazz.” Iyer was 21, and a doctoral student in physics. But after a couple years, he knew he had to follow a new path. He went on to receive an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in the cognitive science of music in 1998.

Music professor wins prestigious Kyoto Prize

June 20, 2017
Richard Taruskin, a UC Berkeley emeritus professor of music, has won a 2017 Kyoto Prize for his contributions to the study, performance and critical discourse of early music, modern Russian music and Western music history.

Walls, spies, East Berlin and the California Book Award

June 5, 2017
Anne Nesbet joins an illustrious list of UC Berkeley professors to receive a California Book Award gold medal, and is the first to earn the honor for a work of fiction.

Divisions of L&S

Arts & Humanities

The division seeks to inspire students to seek for truth and explore creative ideas about our world and its diverse cultures through courses in literature, arts, languages, and philosophy.

Arts & Humanities Graduate Diversity Office

AlbertoWelcome to the Outreach and Diversity Office of the Arts & Humanities Division in the College of Letters & Science at the University of California, Berkeley. If you are a prospective or continuing diversity student interested in pursuing a doctoral degree in any of the Arts & Humanities departments at Berkeley or beyond, this office is set up to meet your needs.