California History Center

California History Center

Wherever There's A Fight: A History of Civil Liberties in California

The California History Center
proudly presents

An exhibition based on the book

Wherever There's a Fight

Wherever There's a Fight
How Runaway Slaves, Suffragists, Immigrants, Strikers, and Poets Shaped Civil Liberties in California
by Elaine Elinson and Stan Yogi (Heyday Books, 2009)

Thursday, Oct. 6, 2011
7:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Featuring both curators and authors of the book — Elaine Elinson and Stan Yogi. Copies of their book will be available for purchase at the reception. There is no charge for the reception and the general public is welcome.

The exhibit runs Oct. 10 through Dec. 2, 2011.

HOURS Tuesday-Thursday, 9:30 a.m. to noon, 1:00-4:00 p.m. and Friday by appointment.

ADMISSION Free and open to the public.  

For more information, contact Tom Izu at 408.864.8986 or by e-mail at izutom@deanza.edu.

Fourteen interpretive panels of photographs and texts tell the stories of ordinary people capable of extraordinary acts, who fought violations of their civil liberties in California, reflecting the prejudices and political winds of the times.

These include Paul Robeson, who told the House Un-American Activities Committee, “You are the Un-Americans and you ought to be ashamed of yourselves.” Anton Refregier’s colorful murals, targeted for destruction by a 1953 Congressional inquisition but ultimately declared historically protected, depict the true stories of Indians at the missions, anti-Chinese riots, and labor strikes. And in 1939, the Kern County Board of Supervisors banned John Steinbeck’s instant best-seller Grapes of Wrath, though 600 readers had already put it on reserve.

“Banning books is so utterly hopeless and futile,” says Kern County’s librarian Gretchen Knief. “Ideas don’t die because a book is forbidden reading.”

Support for this exhibit is provided by the California Council for the Humanities (CCH), which has launched a thematic program initiative designed to animate a public conversation on the meaning of democracy today through a series of local, regional, and statewide humanities-inspired activities. www.calhum.org

Funding is also provided by Exhibit Envoy (formerly California Exhibition Resources Alliance), which provides traveling exhibitions and professional services to museums throughout California. Its mission is to build new perspectives among Californians, create innovative exhibitions and solutions, and advance institutions in service to their communities. www.exhibitenvoy.org



California History Center
Building: CHC
Contact: Tom Izu
Phone: 408.864.8986
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Last Updated: 10/10/11