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Open Access Publications from the University of California


Welcome to the Berkeley Undergraduate Journal, a biannual publication dedicated to publishing exemplary undergraduate research in the humanities and social sciences.


Democratic Culture in America

America has multiple civic traditions and is a nation that blends liberal and illiberal ideals. The Lockean liberal foundations the American civic community is built upon left space for people like Thomas Jefferson to add non-liberal elements to Locke’s theory, so it could better fit the context of the situation. Rogers Smith argues that the political elite fill that space with illiberal values to obtain power or maintain already established power structures.The political elite create “civic myths,” tales that are made from falsehoods, that give the individuals of a certain community greater worth than individuals who do not share the community’s common identity. This can help politicians mobilize their base in times of economic hardship. Since Lockean liberalism gives individuals theirworth based upon their productivity, individuals find their worth in sub-community identities, which politiciansare not afraid to use for their own political gain.


Getting to Zero HIV Cases San Francisco: Reconceptualizing Housing as HIV Prevention and HIV Treatment

The City and County of San Francisco, originallyground zero for the HIV epidemic in the United States, is redefining public health HIV interventions, potentially positioning San Francisco as one of the first major metropolitan cities in the world to reach zero HIV infectioncases, zero HIV-related deaths, and zero HIV-related stigma. As innovative as the Getting to Zero campaign appears to be, it fails to formally incorporate and respond to a fundamental matter pertinent to HIV prevention, HIV treatment, and San Francisco: housing. This research explores service gaps present in Getting to Zero byinvestigating the relationship between class, race, and HIV, specifically by emphasizing the role housing (or lackof housing) creates in shaping health outcomes related to HIV.

Interpersonal Emotion Regulation: Strategies, Behaviors, and Goals

Interpersonal emotion regulation (ER) happens constantly in daily life and plays a role in the success of friendships and relationships. Interpersonal ER refers to the process in which an individual makes efforts to change the emotional experience of another person. Understanding the relationship between interpersonal ER strategies and goals proves necessary towards discerning the effectiveness of different interpersonal ER strategies in various situations. Building on existing research, common strategies used to regulate others’ emotions include helping a partner to accept their emotions (acceptance), change the way they think about their emotions (reappraisal), or inhibit their emotions (suppression). However, alternative strategies may prove to be equally, if not more, common. Additionally, the goals and behaviors associated with interpersonal ER have not been extensively studied. In the present study, I examine the goals associated with interpersonal ER strategies, including the exploration of an additional strategy: distraction. To examine which strategies and goals people are likely to use in a scenario in which a friend is expressing negative feelings, 347 students wrote narratives regarding how they would respond. As expected, acceptance and reappraisal were found to be the most common, while suppression was used least frequently. Results point to the importance of distraction as a common interpersonal ER strategy. Significant relationships were found between four distinct strategies and related goals and behaviors, suggesting that individuals are motivated by specific regulatory, instrumental, and social outcomes beyond basic regulation of emotions. Discussion focuses on how these findings point to newavenues in interpersonal ER research.