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The Gold and the Blue: A Personal Memoir of the University of California, 1949–1967

The Gold and the Blue: A Personal Memoir of the University of California, 1949–1967: Volume Two: Political Turmoil

Copyright Date: 2003
Edition: 1
Pages: 458
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  • Book Info
    The Gold and the Blue: A Personal Memoir of the University of California, 1949–1967
    Book Description:

    TheLos Angeles Timescalled the first volume ofThe Gold and the Blue"a major contribution to our understanding of American research universities." This second of two volumes continues the story of one of the last century's most influential figures in higher education. A leading visionary, architect, leader, and fighter for the University of California, Clark Kerr was chancellor of the Berkeley campus from 1952 to 1958 and president of the university from 1958 to 1967. He saw the university through its golden years-a time of both great advancement and great conflict. This absorbing memoir is an intriguing insider's account of how the University of California rose to the peak of scientific and scholarly stature and how, under Kerr's unique leadership, it evolved into the institution it is today. In Volume II:Political Turmoil,Kerr turns to the external and political environment of the 1950s and 1960s, contrasting the meteoric rise of the University of California to the highest pinnacle of academic achievement with its troubled political context. He describes his attempts to steer a middle course between attacks from the political Right and Left and discusses the continuing attacks on the university, and on him personally, by the state Un-American Activities Committee. He provides a unique point of view of the Free Speech Movement on the Berkeley campus in the fall of 1964. He also details the events of January 1967, when he was dismissed as president of the university by the Board of Regents.

    eISBN: 978-0-520-92953-1
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-viii)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. ix-xii)
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  4. Foreword
    (pp. xv-xxvi)
    Neil J. Smelser

    In my introduction to the first volume of Clark Kerr’s memoirs—The Gold and the Blue, Academic Triumphs—I described the essentials of the remarkable academic and institutional advances of the University of California during the 1950s and 1960s, the period of Kerr’s leadership as chancellor of the Berkeley campus and president of the university. I also attempted to assess his special role in the university’s history during this period. My introduction paralleled the emphases made by Kerr himself in the first volume.

    In introducing the second volume, I will touch on only three of the scores of possible dimensions...

  5. Preface
    (pp. xxvii-xxxii)
  6. Part I. Introduction

    • 1 Politicizing the Ivory Tower
      (pp. 3-24)

      Five external events fundamentally affected the University of California during the mid-twentieth-century period of Shock Wave I. They also affected all other American research universities, usually to a lesser extent. They were

      the Communist political and military challenges to capitalism and democracy, involving American universities in political controversies over alleged subversive activities

      the related advent of high-technology militarization, calling on universities for new research emphases

      the intensified speed of industrialization around the world, changing the nature of much of the labor force and creating a demand for occupationally focused university training

      a demographic engulfment of higher education, tripling enrollments from...

  7. Part II. Impacts of McCarthyism

    • 2 The Catastrophic Loyalty Oath Controversy
      (pp. 27-47)

      Roger Heyns (chancellor at Berkeley, 1965–71) once said to me that every time he traced the origins of the problems he endured from the faculty in the second half of the 1960s, he was led back to the loyalty oath, and a few repercussions continue to this day. The loyalty oath caused the greatest single confrontation between a university faculty and its board of trustees in American history.² It made the second, but not the last, major rent in the fabric of the University of California in the postwar period. The first was the series of conflicts that became...

    • 3 “Un-American” Activities
      (pp. 48-74)

      The U.S. House of Representatives Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) was established in 1938 and continued until 1975 to investigate disloyalty and subversive activity in the United States. Its most active period was 1945–55, and its most publicized investigation was of the “Hollywood Ten” in 1947. Its methods centered on vague and sweeping accusations against individuals. The U.S. Senate’s Committee on Investigations, under the leadership of Joseph McCarthy beginning in 1952, followed this same pattern. Senator McCarthy concentrated his attacks on the U.S. State Department and on Secretary of State (and World War II general) George C. Marshall in particular,...

  8. Part III. The Emergence of Youth Uprisings

    • 4 Youth Uprisings around the World
      (pp. 77-89)

      There has never been a coordinated student movement around the world. There have been many quite disparate student movements, related to each other only by inspiration and imitation, not by organization. An early wave of student political participation in independent modernizing nations involved demands for internal democracy and other reforms, as in Germany, Russia, and Latin America in the nineteenth century.

      A second wave, mostly after World War II, occurred in emerging nations and involved actions supporting national independence from colonial rule, as in India and sub-Saharan Africa. Students in modernizing nations and in nations escaping colonial control often spoke...

    • 5 The Development of Student Political Movements in the United States
      (pp. 90-108)

      During and after World War II, the research university in the United States became what Daniel Bell of Harvard called “theparamount institution” in “post-industrial” societies.³

      The role changed abruptly. Chosen by the national government early in World War II as the main locus for basic scientific research and one locus also for applied research, the university was suddenly asked to do “research” instead of “teaching.” MIT (Radiation Laboratory), Chicago (Metallurgical and Argonne Laboratories), and Berkeley (Radiation Laboratory) became prime centers of the war effort. The Bush-Conant-Compton report of 1945 stated, “The publicly and privately supported colleges, universities, and research...

  9. Part IV. Student Conflict Accelerates at Berkeley

    • 6 The Fatal Attractions of the Berkeley Campus
      (pp. 111-121)

      Demography. Student enrollments at Berkeley had risen from 15,000 before World War II to their planned limit of 27,500 by fall 1964. There were increasing numbers of graduate students across the board and of undergraduate majors particularly in the social sciences and humanities, which were being strengthened on what had been a campus heavily devoted to the sciences. Enrollment of majors in well-reputed departments in the humanities and social sciences tripled (1953–63), and humanities and social science majors had more sharply stated preferences for “liberal political positions” than did the general student body.¹

      More students lived on or near...

    • 7 The Sproul Directives
      (pp. 122-136)

      Rule 17 of 1936 established the most restrictive set of rules covering free speech and political activities on any campus, to my knowledge, of any American university, with the possible exception of City College of New York.¹ Rule 17 set forth policies and practices regarding the use of the university’s name and facilities by student and community organizations, including requiring permission for outside speakers.

      I had run up against Rule 17 when I was chancellor at Berkeley and was resolved to revise it. My first confrontation with Rule 17 had come when twice I had to prohibit Adlai Stevenson from...

    • 8 The Issue of Political Advocacy on Campus
      (pp. 137-148)

      The university administration, defined as the Board of Regents, the universitywide administration, and the Berkeley campus administration, circa 1958, defined free speech as spoken and written words. We defined “advocacy” as actions related to speech, specifically collecting money and collecting names for participation in off-campus causes, not as “speech” per se.¹ We were reflecting past and current practices of the university and past interpretations by the courts, and what we thought were clear distinctions. But court decisions had been changing. The United States Supreme Court was beginning to interpret the Constitution to include some actions associated with speech as covered...

    • 9 Things Start to Fall Apart
      (pp. 149-158)

      Beginning in the late 1950s, activist students wanted to turn the Associated Students into a political organization speaking on behalf of all students on off-campus political issues. The Associated Students had been established by the university to serve many aspects of student life on campus. Membership was compulsory for all undergraduates and so were fees to support the organization. The official university position then was that the university should not and would not compel students to belong to and support financially a political action group. Alexander Meiklejohn defended university policy on the somewhat different grounds that universities are constituted of...

  10. Part V. Berkeley, Fall 1964—The FSM Uprising

    • 10 The Lighted Match
      (pp. 161-191)

      The political situation on the Berkeley campus in fall 1964 was a very complex and constantly changing one. Coalitions formed and then dissolved. Friendships grew and then fell apart. In order to make the situation somewhat understandable, I simplify my summary presentation of it.¹ I also know that there are many other versions of what happened.

      A basic dividing line was between those who represented authority and those who challenged it.² Authority was constituted by the Board of Regents, the administration, and the governor, with support from elements of the faculty, the student body, the alumni, and strong encouragement from...

    • 11 The Conflagration
      (pp. 192-226)

      The September 14 letter was not intended to be a declaration of war but the activist students received it as such. Why this possibility had not occurred to Sherriffs and Strong I do not know. If only partially, Dean Towle so understood it but she was overruled, setting the stage for all that followed in the next three months. Referring to the 26-foot-wide strip at Bancroft and Telegraph, Katherine Towle later said:

      When I became dean of students in July of 1961, I inherited, more or less, the area out there, and the students did use it for their political...

    • 12 The Center Holds and Puts Out the Flames
      (pp. 227-250)

      The Associated Students at Berkeley held firm in its centrist position from the very start. It favored reforms in the rules governing political activity on campus and opposed the use of coercive civil disobedience outside the usual mechanisms for considering and making changes. It was unable, however, to compete successfully with the FSM for student attention. Its chief advocate was its president, Charles Powell.

      The faculty always had centrist leadership, particularly as represented by the Henry Rosovsky group (see episode three), by the Robley Williams committee (see episode four), and by the Robert Scalapino Council of Department Chairs (see episode...

  11. Part VI. Recovery

    • 13 The Center Starts to Build Back
      (pp. 253-264)

      The center built back, in part because of the departures of two important characters: Edward Strong and Mario Savio—one on the right and inside, and the other on the left and outside. Acting Chancellor Martin Meyerson replaced Strong, but no replacement for Savio ever emerged.

      The process of restoring the center was hastened by an unfortunate episode that occurred at the end of December. The regents’ Meyer committee met on December 30, 1964, in Berkeley and again on December 31 at Elinor Heller’s home on the San Francisco peninsula to discuss policy on student rules. Chairman Carter came up...

    • 14 The Center Coalesces
      (pp. 265-280)

      On April 26, 1965, Mario Savio abruptly resigned from the FSM. Heirich reports Savio’s words:

      Lest I feel deserving of the charge of Bonapartism which even I sometimes have made against myself, I’d like to wish you good luck and good-bye.”

      With that Savio strode rapidly away as the crowd stood stunned by the sudden announcement. The next day he explained his action in a letter:

      If the student rights movement at Berkeley must inevitably fail without my leadership, then it were best that it fail. …

      Let me add that perhaps the saddest thing about this community is the...

  12. Part VII. Backlash

    • 15 Reagan and the Regents
      (pp. 283-302)

      Roger Heyns had taken over as chancellor at Berkeley the previous summer, giving the administration a stability that it had not known for quite some time.

      The Board of Regents seemed to be satisfied with the way we were handling the issues that had so disturbed the university. The board had turned over the Meyer committee report on student rules to the president, along with the task of reviewing its recommendations and making them more acceptable to the Academic Senate and to student leaders. And it had turned the Forbes committee study on the causes of student unrest, known as...

    • 16 The Last Day—Losing Big or Winning Big?
      (pp. 303-330)

      After the prearranged special executive session of the Board of Regents from noon to 2 p.m. on Friday, January 20, was concluded, I went to the door of the regents’ room at Berkeley and was met by Beth Hansen, assistant secretary of the board, with an extended arm, palm out, placed against my chest to prevent my entry. I said to Beth: “Why not? The word I got was that everybody could go back in.” Beth said to me: “That means everybody except you.”

      “But it is a public meeting. Who says I can’t go in?”

      “The chairman.”

      “If he...

  13. APPENDIX 1. Selections from FBI Files
    (pp. 331-365)
  14. APPENDIX 2. List of Documentary Supplements
    (pp. 366-368)
  15. Notes
    (pp. 369-392)
  16. Acknowledgments
    (pp. 393-400)
  17. Credits
    (pp. 401-402)
  18. Index
    (pp. 403-427)
  19. Back Matter
    (pp. 428-428)
  20. [Illustrations]
    (pp. 429-460)