Mairi McDermott

Assistant Professor

Doctor of Philosophy

University of Toronto/Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

Master of Science of Teaching

Pace University

Bachelor of Arts

McGill University

Contact information

Phone

Office: 403.220.7497

Web presence

Academia

Location

Main Campus: EDT 740

Research and Scholarly Activities

Research areas

  • Cultural studies
  • Feminist theory/research
  • Motherhood studies
  • Pedagogy
  • Power and knowledge production
  • Qualitative research
  • Sociology of education

Activities

Dr. McDermott’s research queries what kinds of teaching, learning, social, cultural, and political relations can move us beyond the existing habits and assumptions embedded in colonial ways of knowing, being, and relating in schools and society.  Through her various and interdisciplinary research, she is interested in drawing out voices, experiences, and identities that have historically been marginalized to mobilize the full spectrum of ideas in knowledge production.  Central concepts guiding her research include: difficult knowledge; affect and emotions in teaching and learning; story and epistemology; critical pedagogies; voice and identity.

Recent past projects:

  • Factors Contributing to the Success of Indigenous Students in Pre-Service and In-Service Teacher Education (PI)
  • Leading for Indigenous Learning (PI)
  • Citizenship and the Education of African-Canadian Youth: A Qualitative Case Study
  • Affect, Embodiment, and Place in Critical Literacy: Assembling Theory and Practice
  • Action Research for Ongoing Improvements in the Masters of Education Program
  • The Role Schools Play Concerning Well-Being of Educators

Biography

Mairi McDermott is a mother-scholar who holds a PhD in Sociology of Education from the Department of Social Justice Education at OISE, University of Toronto.  After completing her PhD she was an Eyes High Postdoctoral Scholar at the Werklund School of Education and in 2017 continued with the Werklund School of Education as Assistant Professor in Curriculum and Learning.  Her teaching interests include critical qualitative research methods, the ways knowledges are produced, circulated, and embodied, and emotional dimensions of teaching and learning.  Dr. McDermott’s cultural and pedagogical work is inspired by her experiences as a New York City public high school English language arts teacher. 

Professional & Community Affiliations

  • Canadian Society for the Studies of Education (CSSE) – member
  • Literacy Research Association (LRA) – member
  • National Women’s Study Association (NWSA) – member

Publications

BOOKS

  • McDermott, M. [in press]. Mapping the terrains of student voice pedagogies: An autoethnography. New York: Peter Lang.
  • Lenters, K. & McDermott, M. (Eds.) (2020). Affect, embodiment, and place in criticaliteracy: Assembling theory and practice.  New York: Routledge.
  • Dei, G. J. S. & McDermott, M. (Eds.) (2019). Centering African proverbs, Indigenous folktales, and cultural stories in curriculum: Units and lesson plans for inclusive education.  Toronto, ON: Canadian Scholars Press.
  • Dei, G. J. S. & McDermott, M. (Eds.) (2014). Politics of anti-racism education: In search of strategies for transformative learning. New York, NY: Springer.

JOURNAL ARTICLES

BOOK CHAPTERS

  • McDermott, M. (2020). Becoming a mother in the academy: A letter to my children. In S. E. Eaton and A. Burns (Eds.) Women negotiating life in the academy: A Canadian perspective (pp. 161-173).  Singapore: Springer.
  • Lenters, K., & McDermott, M. (2020). Introducing affect, embodiment, and place in critical literacy.  In K. Lenters, and M. McDermott (Eds.) Affect, Embodiment, and Place in Critical Literacy: Assembling Theory and Practice (pp.1-18). New York: Routledge.
  • Lenters, K., & McDermott, M. (2020). Mapping posthuman concepts. In K. Lenters, and M. McDermott (Eds.) Affect, Embodiment, and Place in Critical Literacy: Assembling Theory and Practice (pp. 19-28). New York: Routledge.
  • Dei, G. J. S., & McDermott, M. (2019). Introduction: Centering African proverbs, indigenous folktales, and cultural stories in Canadian curriculum. In G. J. S. Dei & M. McDermott (eds.) Centering African proverbs, Indigenous folktales, and cultural stories in curriculum: Units and lesson plans for inclusive education (pp. 1-17). Toronto, ON: Canadian Scholars Press.
  • Jackson, Y., McDermott, V., Simmons, M., & McDermott, M. (2015). Creating a culture of confidence: Re-Conceptualizing urban educational leadership.  In M. Khalifa, C. Grant, & N. Witherspoon (Eds.). Handbook of urban educational leadership (pp. 62-70). New York, NY: Rowman and Littlefield Publishing Group.
  • McDermott, M. (2014). Mo(ve)ments of affect: Towards an embodied pedagogy for anti-racism education. In G. J. S. Dei & M. McDermott (Eds.). Politics of anti-racism education: In search of strategies for transformative learning (pp. 211-226).  New York, NY: Springer.
  • McDermott, M. & Simmons, M. (2013). Embodiment and the spatialization of race. In G. J. S. Dei & M. Lordan (Eds.) Contemporary issues in the sociology of race and ethnicity: A critical reader (pp. 153-168). New York, NY: Peter Lang.
  • McDermott, M. & Madan, A. (2012). Avoiding the missionary (dis)position: Research relations and (re)presentation. In G. S. Cannella, & S. R. Steinberg (Eds.) Critical qualitative research reader (pp. 235-245). New York, NY: Peter Lang.