The City Lights Foundation fosters an active engagement with books and literary culture. Our public events, publishing program, and educational outreach are dedicated to sustaining a vibrant community of readers, writers, and independent thinkers.

Since 1953, City Lights Books — a bookstore and publishing company founded by Lawrence Ferlinghetti — has demonstrated a commitment to preserving and promoting the diversity of voices and ideas that are represented in quality books.

The City Lights Foundation was created to insure that City Lights will endure as a literary meeting place for the 21st century. We are convinced that a community that values books and the literary arts is essential to a democratic society.  We create links between people of all ages and backgrounds, nurturing the ability to think critically, discern truth, and communicate knowledge. The intention of our programs is to foster intellectual courage and to elevate the literary arts in the public conversation.