Arts & Events

Press Release: Seth Rosenfeld Will Discuss "Subversives" on Monday in Berkeley

Friday November 30, 2012 - 11:13:00 AM

University Press Books welcomes Seth Rosenfeld for a discussion of his new book, Subversives: The FBI's War on Student Radicals and Reagan's Rise to Power at the Musical Offering Cafe .on Monday, December 3rd, from 6:30-7:30,with a book signing to follow, at 2430 Bancroft Way, Berkeley. 

Subversives traces the FBI’s secret involvement with three iconic figures at Berkeley during the 1960s: the ambitious neophyte politician Ronald Reagan, the fierce but fragile radical Mario Savio, and the liberal university president Clark Kerr. Through these converging narratives, the award-winning investigative reporter Seth Rosenfeld tells a dramatic and disturbing story of FBI surveillance, illegal break-ins, infiltration, planted news stories, poison-pen letters, and secret detention lists. He reveals how the FBI’s covert operations—led by Reagan’s friend J. Edgar Hoover—helped ignite an era of protest, undermine the Democrats, and benefit Reagan personally and politically. At the same time, he vividly evokes the life of Berkeley in the early sixties—and shows how the university community, a site of the forward-looking idealism of the period, became a battleground in an epic struggle between the government and free citizens.  

“[An] electrifying examination of a newly declassified treasure trove of documents detailing our government’s campaign of surveillance of the Berkeley campus during the ’60s.” —Matt Taibbi, The New York Times Book Review 

“Armed with a panoply of interviews, court rulings, and freshly acquired F.B.I. document, Rosenfeld shows how J. Edgar Hoover unlawfully distributed confidential intelligence to undermine the nineteen-sixties protest movement in Berkeley, while brightening the political stars of friendly informants like Ronald Reagan. Rosenfeld’s history, at once encyclopedic and compelling, follows a number of interwoven threads.” —The New Yorker 

Seth Rosenfeld was for many years an investigative reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, where his article about the free speech movement won seven national awards. He lives in San Francisco. 

Monday, December 3rd, 6:30-7:30 

(with a book signing to follow) 

The Musical Offering Café 

2430 Bancroft Way, Berkeley