In A Nutshell

We’re a nonprofit and a community of writers and thinkers organizing free education in the arts and humanities.

Our Mission

  • develop techniques for creative writing and public speaking
  • increase knowledge of the arts and humanities
  • prepare participants for future education and careers
  • create meaningful and supportive communities
  • save participants money on programs that would be costly elsewhere

How it Works

The People’s Colloquium’s offerings relate to the study of philosophy and ideas, and the practice of creative writing with a focus on both poetry and prose.

Everyone’s welcome to participate how they wish with a frequency that compliments their schedules. 

All offerings are free. The People’s Colloquium accepts donations to fund its programs—we appreciate those who can help! 

Being community-driven, we welcome committed participants to help organize The People’s Colloquium. Find out who we are.

The People’s Colloquium provides scheduling, logistics, facilitation, and the maintenance of electronic and real-time spaces. The People, such as yourself, provide knowledge, perspective, and connection in the form of peers, mentors, and teachers.

We’re united by our desire to learn.

Ready to get started?

Navigating the People’s Colloquium


A Colloquium is an academic conference or seminar. We use it in the colloquial (ha!) sense of “getting people together and getting them talking.”

It’s pronounced: Ka-low-quee-um.

We believe the arts and humanities represent traditions of inestimable value, embodying humanity’s collective search for expression and meaning. In our time and place, the cost of education in the arts and humanities is growing, especially at the university level, which is creating problems of accessibility. We believe there should be alternatives ways to practice the arts and study within the humanities—which is what The People’s Colloquium aspires to offer.
Everyone’s welcome to join The People’s Colloquium. We’re especially eager to include those who take their studies and artistry seriously, and who can make a regular commitment to attendance in our educational offerings. It’s our goal to create an intellectual environment with a high standard of preparation, engagement, and accountability that’s open to everyone in the Portland area.
Participants have a lot of control over how active they are in our events, and thus, how much time they spend each week preparing for and attending The People’s Colloquium. Most offerings require some work in advance, such as readings prior to a prose critique, or reflecting on the syllabus and recommended materials prior to an academic discussion. Our prose and poetry critique groups, require either a weekly or every-other-week attendance commitment.
Right now they take place in the inner east-side of Portland on Monday and Tuesday evenings.
We take several factors into account when building weekly prose and poetry critique groups such as creative and intellectual interests, requests, scheduling preferences, education and experience,  and personal dynamics.
Yes, please join our Facebook Group and take part in the discussions happening there!
Check out who we are for information about our cooperative nonprofit structure and open volunteer positions.
Go here. But don’t just donate—join us for our weekly seminar or workshop soon. 😉