The 2019 PIN Network Conference in Münster
© F. Espinoza and J. Wacker

Research network

PIN - Postcolonial Intellectuals and their European Publics 

PIN, the Postcolonial Intellectuals and their European Publics Network, is a NWO-funded project that brings together more than 25 European academics from nine universities. PIN not only focuses on postcolonial intellectuals as critical individuals in the public eye but also challenges the traditional definition of the ’public intellectual‘ by emphasizing the role of artists, writers, activists and social movements in shaping postcolonial publics and knowledges. The interdisciplinary network investigates the role of postcolonial public intellectuals as crucial agents in renewing the function of the humanities and of democratic participation in Europe and beyond.

The conference “Postcolonial Intellectuals and their European Publics” (University of Utrecht) successfully kicked-off the PIN network in February 2019. As the second event in this conference series, the PTTS team co-organised “Intellectuals Across Borders: Writers, Artists, Activists” (IAB2019), hosted by the University of Münster and the University of Lisbon (5-6 September 2019). The conference worked with the idea that writers, artists, and activists – like migrant academics and political representatives – can embrace the role of postcolonial intellectual through intervention and public impact. IAB2019 therefore asked how postcolonial intellectual interventions across boundaries challenge the divides between public and private, inclusion and exclusion, citizen and migrant, and create counter-publics where sexual, ethnic, religious, and other minoritized groups stake their claims and play out their actions. The conference brought into focus the manifold, productive, and often unexpected ways in which public intellectuals engage in European societies. For more information on the conference, please visit

Future conferences organised by the PIN Network include Leeds 2020, Warwick 2020, and Venice 2021.

PIN members include:

Sandra Ponzanesi (Utrecht University), Ana Cristina Mendes (University of Lisbon), Mark U Stein, Julian Wacker, and Felipe Espinoza Garrido (all WWU Münster), John McLeod, Graham Huggan, and Max Silverman (all University of Leeds), Adriano José Habed (University of Verona), Daniela Merolla (Sorbonne Paris Cité, USPC), Paulo de Medeiros (University of Warwick), Sabrina Marchetti and Shaul Bassi (University of Venice, Ca’ Foscari), Bolette B. Blaagaard (Aalborg University), and Neelam Srivastava (University of Newcastle).