Best Lecture Series

Berkeley Arts & Letters

An internationally renowned array of much-laureled experts on everything from history to technology to spirituality to sports are featured speakers in a series whose qualifications surely include codicils such as “Only Nobel, Pulitzer, Man Booker, and National Book Award and Whiting Award winners as well as individuals variously described as geniuses, revolutionary social observers, and the voices of their generations need apply.” Independent bookstores Mrs. Dalloway’s, Moe’s, University Press Books, and The Booksmith join forces with the series’ planners to stage events at the First Congregational Church of Berkeley and Berkeley’s historic Hillside Club. This year’s dozen-plus readings have been a virtual who’s who, featuring Pulitzer Prize-winning political historian and Bomb Power author Garry Wills, National Book Award-winning novelist and The Things They Carried author Tim O’Brien, and Australian novelist Peter Carey, who has won the Miles Franklin Award, the Commonwealth Writers Prize, the Vance Palmer Prize, the Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger, and the Booker Award (not once, but twice).

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