New humanities institute: The Paris Institute for Critical Thinking (PICT)

David Selim Sayers, Ph.D.

The Paris Institute for Critical Thinking (PICT) is a non-profit educational organization located in Paris, France. Founded in early 2018 by a group of international scholars, artists, and professionals, PICT offers university-quality humanities courses in the English language to audiences beyond the university.

PICT aims to address 3 basic challenges:

1. A growing number of students and universities regard higher education through the lens of vocational training. This increases the demand for applied, quantifiable courses and marginalizes the humanities.

2. The academic job market is under a lot of stress, which means that many promising young scholars find themselves without jobs, in exploitative adjunct positions, and/or teaching survey courses with little relevance to their passion and research.

3. While the city of Paris boasts some of the most impressive cultural and intellectual programming in the world, it lacks sufficient offerings that allow Parisians to employ the English language in critical reflection and sophisticated discussion.

PICT gives learners of all ages a chance to engage with the humanities and critical thinking beyond the university. It offers young academics the opportunity to teach courses reflecting their own interests and be compensated fairly: 70% of enrollment fees are passed on directly to the instructor. And it provides English-speaking Parisians of all backgrounds with a space to combine the best of the city with the best of critical thinking.

There are many ways for scholars to engage with PICT right away:

1. You can spread the word about our course offerings to interested learners.
2. You can design your own course or workshop and apply to join PICT as a visiting faculty member.
3. You can propose an intstitutional partnership between PICT and your university, institute, or foundation.
4. You can deliver a one-off public lecture organized by PICT during your next visit to Paris.

Please e-mail us with any questions or comments you may have--we look forward to hearing from you!

David Selim Sayers, Ph.D.
Core Faculty Member
Public Relations & Research Coordinator
Paris Institute for Critical Thinking (PICT)


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