"Are you ready GCAS? Are you ready to move light years into the co-present pasts and futures of your minds? Are you prepared to question whether you exist or not? IF not... RUN AWAY. Are you ready to glimpse into the mind of the divine and the truly Evil...and realize they are one and the same? Are you prepared to challenge everything you know? I hope. Clear all moorings and ahead one quarter impulse..." Lady Gaga
“GCAS has the general, almost nomadic theme of research as a mode of movement and thinking. It’s an effort to re-search the possibility of moving through the surrounded economic, environmental, educational, artistic and political topology in order to introduce a counter model and insist on what can be done differently.” Ilya V. Abulkhanov (LA, California)
“In the year or so that I have been associated with GCAS I have been consistently impressed by the high level of academic discourse among a radically diverse collection of students and faculty. Unified around a timely and compelling ethos,our raison d'etre revolves around three key points: 1) academic freedom (a parting from institutional/neoliberal constraints) 2) affordable higher education and 3) a new model in which faculty and alumni own the institution.”
“But there is something more, a mysterious force among GCASians that goes beyond the above explanation. Here I have found what I can only call "education with a heart," a dynamic that makes GCAS feel more like a family than an institution.
Perhaps GCAS represents a return to the roots of academic tradition, to ancient ways of conjoining in respectful yet potent discourse. Or perhaps it is something entirely new, a necessary emergence in response to today's many crises. In any case, history is being made at GCAS, I feel, and I am glad to be a part of it.” — Mark Stimson, PhD Researcher, Director of Education Development & Chair of the Sustainable Living Dept.
“The Global Center for Advanced Studies (GCAS) is a massive movement that unites common forces deprived of any illusions and ready to take matters into their own hands.
It is an experiment, initiated 5 years ago, and already brought to collaboration more than 10K people including the world's most well-known intellectuals, activists, artist, startapers and hackers (to list a few Alain Badiou, Antonio Negri, Luce Irigaray, Slavoj Zizek, Catherine Malabou, Jean-Luc Nancy, Bracha L. Ettinger, Jean-Luc Nancy).
Within the established terminological framework GCAS posits itself as an experimental advanced education, but really it’s so much more than this. It claims (while playing by the present rules) no less than to overthrow the dogmatic distinction on research, education, paid labor and leisure by establishing new before unthinkable ways of productive collaboration.” - Julie Reshe, PhD
“Every aspect of The Global Center for Advanced Studies that can be transparent has been made so, and nearly every step of university development is a cooperative effort open to all participants.
When a person is given the freedom to participate fully in their own future, the sense of accomplishment and resulting empowerment belongs more fully to them as creators of new knowledge. This is the very reason I pursued a relationship with GCAS in the first place, and not another university that wanted to mold my research into their vision of what the outcome should be. I wanted to do my own interdisciplinary research with support and guidance - not to have my well informed context diluted.
GCAS is a place where widely diverse discussions about Cryptoeconomics and Colonialism in Psychology exist side by side in the same community forum without judgement or pretension. It is a place where all participants are there for the betterment of the human condition and not for their own personal glory.” —Erica Kitzman, PhD Researcher & Co-Editor of The GCAS Review
“I want to recall to all our students and faculty that what is important is to keep in mind the very essence of our school: not to accumulate some knowledge for finding a place in the world as it is, even if to know the world is useful and to find a place a necessity. But to learn what is true thinking for changing the world under the principles of equality and priority of the common good against the present dictatorship of private property and individual satisfaction.” —Alain Badiou
A Reflection on GCAS by Nathan Wiley
“What Is Philosophy —in the context of 21st-century higher education? That is the question being asked, with theoretically innovative answers not only being drafted for a robust discourse, but put into practice in innovative and sociopolitially conscientiousness ways, by the Global Center for Advanced Studies. Through my four years of involvement with GCAS, I watched—along with over 100,000 others worldwide—as GCAS took a stand for Democracy in Athens in 2015 when Syriza issued its historic bailout referendum. I connected with other unconventional philosophers like myself and became part of a nomadic international community of “renegade intellectuals,” men and women who know what it is to truly follow the Socratic summons to an existence as a stranger (atopos , or ‘unclassifiable’) in the world. Like Socrates, GCAS encourages a life of active reflection and living consciousness through which a revaluation of values and upending of the guiding norms of life cannot help but lead to conflict with the status quo.”
“With GCAS, not only have I been encouraged to think freely; my ideas have also been outfitted with boots for more immediate traction on cultural and political terrain. In April 2016, for example, through a seminar on political revolution with guest lecturer and co-creator of Occupy Wall Street, Micah White, I was able to propose and subsequently lead organizing efforts for a follow-up event to GCAS’ 2015 Democracy Rising conference in Athens. Through this event I gained invaluable experience in activism and in “Practicing Intellectual Resistance” (which would be the title of our next conference in Slovenia).
And the most amazing part of it all? I didn’t have to go into debt to have these incredible opportunities. I only had to be willing to honestly ask questions, to put myself in question, and to embark on the journey of a genuine philosophical transformation. Although I wasn’t well off financially, I was still able to participate in seminars and lectures with some of the world’s most distinguished thinkers. That’s what GCAS is all about: education based not on your financial means, your past achievements, or even your “merits” (however they may be determined), but rather on your willingness to engage the subject matter, which remains fundamentally the same for GCAS today as it was for the “unclassifiable” Socrates nearly two-and-a-half millennia ago.
‘Know thyself.—It would only be a cliche if GCAS weren’t perhaps the only higher education institution still taking it seriously.” — Nathan Wiley, Philosopher
“It is impossible to capture the experience of being in Paris wondering the cobbled streets, chewing on the stimulating daily seminars. To be able to experience a philosophy, delivered straight from a philosopher who’s dedicated her whole life and reputation to developing an alternative approach our understanding of reality and the impact we can have on interpersonal social evolution was a overwhelming privilege. Mornings were filled with a tailored lecture from Luce Irigaray, easing us into each layer of her development and evenings were free space to explore both the cities delicious foods, inviting culture and endlessly fascinating people. All while we sat under the light of the setting moon and became part of the process of this philosophy’s understanding. Each person brought something different from their own understanding. Each evening adventure expanding our ability to explore and get lost in both philosophy, community and the poetic treasure that is Paris.” –Jennifer Merrihue, (Los Angeles, California)