Noam Chomsky Defines What It Means to Be a Truly Educated Person

Noam Chomsky Defines What It Means to Be a Truly Educated Person | Open Culture

Chomsky, whose thoughts on education we’ve featured before, tells us in the short video interview at the top of the post how hedefines what it means to be truly educated. And to do so, he reaches  back to a philosopher whose views you won’t hear referenced often, Wilhelm von Humboldt, German humanist, friend of Goethe and Schiller, and “founder of the modern higher education system.” 

Humboldt, Chomsky  says, “argued, I think, very plausibly, that the core principle and requirement of a fulfilled human being is the ability to inquire and  create constructively, independently, without external controls.” A true education, Chomsky suggests, opens a door to human intellectual freedom and creative autonomy.

To clarify, Chomsky paraphrases a “leading physicist” and former MIT colleague, who would tell his students, “it’s not important what we cover in the class; it’s important what you discover.” On this point of view, to be truly educated means to be resourceful, to be able to “formulate serious questions” and “question standard doctrine, if that’s appropriate”…. It means to “find your own way.” This definition sounds similar to Nietzsche’s views on the subject, though Nietzsche had little hope in very many people attaining a true education. Chomsky, as you might expect, proceeds in a much more democratic spirit.


Paid Internships at the MFC centre for 2016/7. Deadline April 27.

Paid Internships: Sept 1, 2016 to March 15, 2017
Multi-Faith Centre
Application Deadline: 11:59 pm, Wednesday, April 27, 2016.

Application requirements:
The application is comprised of two parts: (1) cover letter and (2) resume.

Your cover letter should outline the following:
• Your interest in working at the Centre, and how your academic background, experience and skills would allow you to make a unique contribution to the work of the Centre and through the particular internship you are applying for
• Confirmation that you will be a full-time student in 2016 – 2017. The internships are only open to full-time students.

Your resume should outline experience that is current and related to the position description.

Submit your complete application by email to Richard Chambers at In the subject field, enter whether you are applying for a:

General Internships (6 positions)
Environmental Internship (1 position)
Queering Religion Internship (1 position)
Communications Internship (1 position)

Applicants will be contacted regarding an interview the 1st week of May. All applicants will be contacted regarding the status of their application as soon as possible.

About the Multi-Faith Centre
The Multi-Faith Centre offers educational opportunities for students, staff and faculty to engage in personal and collective processes of discerning life purpose and meaning, as well as opportunities to engage in inter-faith cooperation for social justice. The Multi-Faith Centre serves all students, staff and faculty, including those who identify as “agnostic,” “atheist” or “secularist.” In addition the Centre offers guidance on religious accommodation, religious pluralism and spiritual life on campus as well as a physical space where students, staff and faculty can gather for worship, meditation, yoga and other spiritual practices.

About the Multi-Faith Centre Internship Program
The Multi-Faith Centre Internship Program provides undergraduate and graduate students structured learning opportunities to examine the role of religion and religious actors in society; explore questions of identity, culture and community; and engage in personal and collective processes of discerning life purpose and meaning through sustained study of the interconnections between spirituality and social justice. Interns will have an opportunity to develop a related project under the guidance of Multi-Faith Centre staff.

The Multi-Faith Centre for Spiritual Study and Practice is offering 6 general programming internships, 1 environmental internship, 1 internship exploring sexual orientation, identity and faith, and 1 communications internship consisting of 10 hours a week at $12.73 an hour from Sept 1, 2016 to Mar 15, 2017 to full-time students (during that academic year) on the St George campus.


Multi-Faith Centre interns are responsible for the following:

• Supporting Multi-Faith Centre staff- and intern-led programming
• Planning, developing, promoting, implementing and leading a minimum of 3 projects
• Supporting student clubs with joint programming engaged in questions of religion, faith, spirituality and social justice
• Attending weekly meetings with Multi-Faith Centre staff and interns
• Holding weekly office hours at the Multi-Faith Centre

• Currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program in any discipline at St. George Campus
• Excellent organizational and time management skills
• Excellent project development skills
• Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including public speaking skills
• Excellent interpersonal skills
• Ability to work independently and collaboratively
• Understanding of equity and social justice theory and practice

Additional requirements for Eco-Spirituality Internship applicants
• Knowledge of ecological justice theory and practice. Knowledge of Indigenous land-based pedagogy is an asset.
• Demonstrated experience planning and implementing ecology-focused events and projects
• Experience with participating in environment and sustainability-focused clubs on campus, and environment focused organizations and movements

Additional requirements for Queering Religion Internship
• Understanding of LGBTTQQ2SIAA issues
• Understanding of issues of sexism, racism, homophobia, bi-phobia transphobia and other forms of oppressions
• Experience with participating in and/or creating supportive spaces for LGBTTQQ2SIAA identified peoples
• Interest in examining intersections of gender, sexuality, race, faiths, religions, theologies and spiritual practices

Additional requirements for Communication Internship applicants
• Demonstrated experience with HTML, CMS, MS Office
• Demonstrated experience with social media (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)
• Courses taken or skills acquired in graphic design, web 2.0 and social media are an asset
• Short-listed candidates will be required to provide work samples

April 6, UC: Science for Peace: Windows of Opportunity: How Women Seize Peace Negotiations for Political Change

Science for Peace: Windows of Opportunity: How Women Seize Peace Negotiations for Political Change
Please join us for a free public lecture on Wednesday April 6th from 7-9pm in Room UC 144 of University College ( 15 King’s College Circle, Toronto, ON M5S 3H7 ) at the University of Toronto’s St George campus:
Dr. Miriam Anderson is Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics and Public Administration and a member of the Yeates School of Graduate Studies at Ryerson University. She holds a PhD from the University of Cambridge (2010) in Politics and International Studies, an MA in Political Science (2004) from the University of British Columbia, and a BA in International Relations from the University of British Columbia.

Dr. Anderson researches peace processes, post-conflict reconstruction, and transnationalism in war and peace. She currently holds (as the principal investigator) a SSHRC Insight Development Grant entitled “Sustaining Women’s Gains Made During Peace Negotiations” (2014-2016) and a SSHRC Connection Grant (2014-2015), “Transnational Actors in War and Peace.
Miriam Anderson teaches courses on women, war and peace; global governance; and women and politics.

From 1999-2002, Anderson served as a human rights monitor for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in Croatia. During this period she also monitored elections in Bosnia-Herzegovina and in Croatia for the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR). Anderson has also volunteered with grassroots organizations in Nicaragua and El Salvador.
This event is part of a weekly series of talks entitled: “Vital Discussions of Human Security”. Please see for details on all of our upcoming events. Please see our YouTube channel for videos from past events.