Patty Douglas

A white woman with brown hair in a side ponytail and glasses is looking at the camera and smiling.

I respect the treaties that were made on these lands and acknowledge that Brandon University is located on the traditional homelands and present day lands of the Dakota, Anishanabek, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dene and Metis peoples.

Associate Professor

University of Toronto, Ph.D., M.A., B.Ed.
Office: Faculty of Education 109
Email: douglasp@brandonu.ca
Phone: 204-727-7486

Pronouns: she/ her

I am an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at Brandon University. My work in disability studies in education concentrates on critical, phenomenological and creative approaches to autism, inclusion, disruptive pedagogies, histories of science and care. I orient to disability as a socio-cultural phenomenon. I am supported in my work by critical autism, cultural studies, feminist, queer/crip, decolonial, Black studies, critical post-humanist and other critical approaches as well as phenomenological and creative methodologies that dislodge ‘the (humanist) human’ in educational research and practice. My current multimedia storytelling project is supported by a SSHRC Insight Grant, Re•Storying Autism in Education. I am also pursuing research on Disruptive Pedagogies, supported by a Brandon University New Faculty grant, Disability, Inclusion and Education: A Program Review. I am a member of the Faculty of Graduate Studies at Brandon University, Adjunct Graduate Faculty Member, Department of Educational Foundations, College of Education within the College of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies, University of Saskatchewan and Senior Research Affiliate at the Re•Vision Centre for Art and Social Justice at the University of Guelph. 
I am a former special education teacher and mother of two sons, one of whom attracted the label of autism. I recently submitted my first book, Autism and Mothering: Ethical Disruptions and Care Pedagogies with UBC Press.

Recent Publications

Douglas, P., Katherine Runswick-Cole, Sara Ryan & Penny Fogg (forthcoming). Mad mothering: Learning from the intersections of madness, mothering and disability. Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies.

Douglas, P. & Martino, A. S. (2020). Disability Studies in Education—Critical Conversations. Canadian Journal of Disability Studies, Special Issue on Disability Studies in Education (Eds.).

Lawrence, B., Underwood, K., & Douglas, P. (2020). IECSS Policy Brief No. 9: Reconciling Interests of Children and Economies during the COVID-19 pandemic: Learning from Brandon, Manitoba. Inclusive Early Childhood Service System Project. https://www.ryerson.ca/content/dam/inclusive-early-childhood-service-system/findings/publications/Policy_Brief_9_MAY-21-2020_finalversion.pdf

Rice, C., LaMarre, A., Changfoot, N. & Douglas, P. (2020). Making spaces: Multimedia storytelling as reflexive, creative praxis. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 17(2), 222-239. DOI: 10.1080/14780887.2018.1442694

Douglas, P., Rice, C. & Siddiqui, A. (2020). Living dis/artfully with and in illness. Journal of Medical Humanities, 41, 395-410. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10912-019-09606-5

Douglas, P. & Klar, E. (2019). Beyond disordered brains and mother blame: Critical issues in autism and mothering. In L. O. Hallstein, A. O’Reilly and M. Vandenbeld Giles (Eds.). Routledge Motherhood Companion. London: Routledge.

Douglas, P., Rice, C., Runswick-Cole, K., Easton, A., Gibson, M., Gruson-Wood, J., Klar, E., & Shields, R. (Advance online publication January 4, 2019). Re-storying autism: A body becoming disability studies in education approach. International Journal of Inclusive Education. https://doi.org/10.1080/13603116.2018.1563835

Gibson, M. & Douglas, P. (2018). Disturbing behaviours: O Ivar Lovaas and the queer history of autism science. Catalyst: Feminism, Theory, Technoscience, 4(2).  https://doi.org/10.28968/cftt.v4i2.29579  

Douglas, P., Rice, C. & Kelly, C. (2017). Cripping care: Care pedagogies and practices (Editorial). Review of Disability Studies, 13(4), 1-12. https://www.rdsjournal.org/index.php/journal/article/view/779

Current research projects

Re•Storying Autism in Education: Advancing the Cultures and Practices of Inclusion (Principal Investigator and Co-Director) is an international, collaborative participatory multimedia story-making project in Brandon, MB, SW Ontario and Yorkshire, England collaborating with autistic people, family members, educators,  practitioners, artists and disability/community arts organizations to rethink inclusion and difference in schools. This project is an Insight Grant funded by the Social Sciences and Research Council of Canada. GRANT NUMBER: 435-2019-0129 (2019-2023) @ReStorying https://restoryingautism.com/

Neurodiversity matters: An ethnographic investigation of discourse, practice, and identity (Co-investigator). What kinds of human diversity do we value? This grant explores how people and documents are currently using the term, concept, and identity of “neurodiversity”.  This project is an Insight Development Grant funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. http://www.sshrc-crsh.gc.ca/results (2019-2021)

Disability, Inclusion and Education (Principal Investigator and Director), is a project making disability studies interventions into inclusive and special education teacher education programs. A special issue on Disability Studies in Education for the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies is currently in press. A conference and edited book collection, as well as a book project on Disruptive Pedagogies are under development. This project is funded by the Brandon University Research Committee New Faculty Research Grant. (2017-2020)

What is the Best Policy Mix for Diverse Canadian Families with Young Children? Re-imagining Family Policies (Co-investigator) In spite of recent policy efforts by Canadian federal, provincial, and territorial governments to address disparities among Canadian families, well-documented problems require systemic attention. What is needed to tackle such problems is a unified, interdisciplinary, integrated, multi-sectoral, partnership-based approach to the co-creation and mobilization of knowledges about family policies and families’ policy experiences. In Brandon, the Brandon Friendship Centre is our formal partner. This is a SSHRC Partnership Grant. https://www.sshrc-crsh.gc.ca/results-resultats/recipients-recipiendaires/2020/partnership_grants_2020-subventions_partenerial_2020-eng.aspx

Inclusive Early Childhood Service System project: A longitudinal study of familial viewpoints of early childhood disability services (Co-investigator) http://inclusiveearlychildhood.ca/, is an international project investigating family experiences with early childhood disability services. In Brandon, the Brandon Friendship Centre is our formal partner. This project is a Partnership Grant funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. GRANT NUMBER: 165720. (2018-2026)

Bodies in Translation: Activist Art, Technology and Access to Life (Co-investigator), http://bodiesintranslation.ca/ is a project exploring disability art, Deaf art, Mad art, aging and e/Elder art, fat art, and Indigenous art, and access to life. We, the researchers, artists, curators, practitioners, and community members on this grant, explore the relationship between cultivating activist art and achieving social and political justice. This project is a Partnership Grant funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada GRANT NUMBER: 152623 (2016-2024)

Courses in Development

EDUC 07:798 Creative Methodologies

Disruptive Pedagogies

Ethics of Disruption: Philosophical Perspectives

Courses Developed

EDUC 04: 748 Autism & Education

EDUC 04:749 Advanced Disability Studies in Education (under revision)

Courses Taught

EDUC 04:354 Assessment and Evaluation

EDUC 04:356 Social Justice Education

EDUC 04:750 Theories of Inclusive Education

EDUC 04:751 Practices of Inclusive Education

EDUC 04: 748 Autism & Education

Recent Community Talks

Douglas, P. & R. Shields. (2020). A new view of autism. Keynote presentation at the Learning, Information for Teachers Conference (LIFT), Brandon Teacher’s Association, Brandon, MB, 23rd October.

Douglas, Patty. (2020). How a digital storytelling project is changing minds about the problem of autism in schools. BU at the Brandon Public Library Speakers Series, 16th January.

Douglas, Patty. (2019). Re•Storying autism in education. Special Services Administrators Association of Manitoba Pre-Conference, Brandon Manitoba, 27th November.

Douglas, Patty, Carla Rice & Katherine Runswick-Cole. (2019). Critical and creative engagements at the intersection of arts-based research, critical autism and disability studies. Provocations in Critical Disability Studies, iHuman, The University of Sheffield, 8th July.

Recent Panels Organized

Douglas, P. (2021). Intersectional disability studies in education (with Alan Santinele Martino). Canadian Sociological Association, Congress for the Social Sciences and Humanities, online event, May-June.  

**Panels organized for 2020 were cancelled.

Douglas, P. (2019). Re-storying autism: Multi-media storytelling as critical dialogue, Canadian Disability Studies Association, Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities, University of British Columbia, 2nd June.

Douglas, P. (2019). Disability studies in education: A call to action (2 panels), Canadian Sociological Association, Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities, University of British Columbia, 3rd June.

Douglas, P. (2018). Re-storying mothering and autism, Motherhood Initiative for Research and Community Involvement, Florence, Italy, 2nd-4th May.

Douglas, P. (2017). Disability Disturbs: Rethinking the Social (with Katie Aubrecht and Anne McGuire), Canadian Sociological Association, Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Toronto, ON, 27th-2nd May-Jun.

Douglas, P. (2015). Disability Studies in Educational Spaces: Undoing Capital, Canadian Disability Studies Association – Association Canadienne des Études sur l’Incapacité, Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Ottawa, ON, 2nd June.

Recent Academic Papers Presented

**Conference papers planned for 2020 were cancelled

Gibson, Margaret F. and Patty Douglas. (2019). Claiming Neurodiversity: Autism, Expertise and Resistance. National Women’s Studies Association Annual Conference, Hilton Garden Square, San Francisco, 16th November.

Douglas, Patty and Margaret F. Gibson. (2019). Multimedia Storytelling as a Vitally Fraught Space of Feminist Disability Resistance. National Women’s Studies Association Annual Conference, Hilton Garden Square, San Francisco, 15th November.

Douglas, Patty, Katherine Runswick-Cole, Sara Ryan and Penny Fogg. (2019). Mad mothering: learning from the intersections of madness, mothering, gender and disability. Disability and Disciplines: The International Conference on Educational, Cultural and Disability Studies, Liverpool Hope University, UK, 3rd-4th, July.

Douglas, Patty,  Carla Rice, Steacy Easton Meg Gibson & Raya Shields. (2019). Re-storying autism: Multi-media storytelling as critical dialogue. Canadian Disability Studies Association, Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities, University of British Columbia, 2nd June.

 Douglas, Patty & Alan Santinele Martino. (2019). The Astonishing Absence of Disability Studies in Education, Canadian Sociological Association, Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities, University of British Columbia, 3rd June.

Douglas, Patty & Margaret F. Gibson. (2019). Conversations at the Intersection of Feminism, Disability Studies and Decolonization: Untangling the Care-violence Binary in Parenting and Disability, Canadian Sociological Association, Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities, University of British Columbia, 4th June.

Douglas, Patty & Katherine Runswick-Cole. (2018). Re-storying mothering and autism, Motherhood Initiative for Research and Community Involvement Conference, Florence, Italy, 2nd-4th May.

Creative Outputs

Douglas, P. (Producer and Panel moderator). Autism on Screen. ReelAbilities Film Festival, 4th November.

Singer, Kat (Director) & Patty Douglas (Producer). (2020). Unquiet Hands (short). Autism on Film. ReelAbilities Film Festival, 24th May. https://vimeo.com/374722896/bd7060d292

Douglas, Patty (Producer). (2016-2021). Re•Storying Autism in Education Video Archive. Produced over 34 videos with autistic individuals, practitioners, educators and family members and artists  (To see a selection go to https://restoryingautism.com/ and click on the ‘Gallery’ tab)

 Douglas, Patty (Producer) & Erin MacIndoe-Sproule (Director). (2017). Autism + inclusion (To watch this short documentary, go to https://restoryingautism.com/ and scroll down).