I would like to get involved, propose an idea (e.g., for a conference) or share resources that could be helpful to others. Who should I contact?
Feel free to contact us at info@colloquia.ca.
I disagree with some content on your website and would like to offer another point of view. How do I do that?
That is why we are here! If you would like to share another point of view, please email us at info@colloquia.ca.
Is Colloquia a political organization?
No, we are intentionally apolitical as an organization, and community members cross the ideological spectrum from “left” to “right”, including those who chose not to identify politically.
Isn’t “viewpoint diversity” just a front for far right ideologies?
Extremists on all sides of the political spectrum can and do leverage terms to suit their own purposes. However, concerns around viewpoint diversity is not a left-right issue, and attacks against viewpoint diversity within the academy and on Academic Freedom come from both the left and the right. However, there are differences in the kinds of attacks that occur from different political groups. Attacks from the right tend to come from outside the academy, while attacks from the left tend to come from within. Although high profile “cancellations” tend to make the news, it is actually subtler forms of orthodoxy, the so-called “chilling effect” that we are primarily concerned with. We have no interest in replacing one kind of orthodoxy with another. Rather, we hope to encourage an inclusive dialog around difficult and complex issues.
If your goal is to create an environment that is welcoming to diverse perspectives, shouldn’t the focus be on ensuring that members of underrepresented and marginalized communities feel welcome and heard?
An academy that is truly open to discussing difficult topics must of course be one in which people from underrepresented and marginalized communities feel welcome and heard. We feel the best way to do this is with an approach that values the unique perspectives of all individuals, rather than building a hierarchy where some voices are valued more than others based on their group identity. Our focus on promoting dialogue with dignity and respect means that difficult ideas and truths (including those about current and past harms to marginalized communities) are heard and discussed. This can only happen in an environment where all voices, when coming from a place of respect and good faith, are heard.
How does Colloquia relate to Heterodox Academy and Heterodox Canada?
Heterodox Academy has provided funds to support the efforts of Colloquia, but is not responsible for our content and activities. Heterodox Canada is an affiliate community of Heterodox Academy, and it is a place for discussion and social connection between members of Heterodox Academy interested in issues specific to the Canadian context. Colloquia emerged out of discussions among members of the Heterodox Canada community wanting to take a more active role in promoting the goals of respectful and open dialog on university campuses. We always welcome suggestions for activities that fit within the scope described in our “about us” section. Note that we do not as a group engage in activism for specific causes or individuals, although our members individually may do so.
Will you sign my open letter?
As an organization, we do not take position with respect to specific cases of cancellation or other actions or policies. However, we note as a point of principle that cancellation of individuals who espouse unpopular ideas, when those ideas are presented in good faith, is contradictory to the good functioning of a free and just society.