Peter McLaren

Peter McLarenPeter McLaren is internationally recognized as one of the leading architects of critical pedagogy worldwide. McLaren is currently Professor of Education, Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles.

Born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1948, and raised in both Toronto and Winnipeg, Manitoba, he earned a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature at Waterloo University in 1973 (he specialized in Elizabethan drama), attended Toronto Teachers College and went on to earn a Bachelor of Education at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Education, a Masters of Education at Brock University’s College of Education, and a Ph.D. at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto.

Professor McLaren taught elementary and middle school from 1974-1979, and most of that time was spent teaching in Canada’s largest public housing complex located in Toronto’s Jane-Finch Corridor. Cries from the Corridor , McLaren’s book about his teaching experiences, made the Canadian bestseller list and was one of top ten bestselling books in Canada in 1980 (MacLean’s Magazine), initiating a country-wide debate on the status of inner-city schools.

After earning his doctorate in 1983, he served as Special Lecturer in Education at Brock University where he specialized in teaching in urban education and language arts contexts. He also served as a consultant for the National Film Board of Canada and served on the Canadian Cancer Society Educational Subcommittee, 1980-83.

Professor McLaren left his native Canada in 1985 to teach at Miami University of Ohio’s School of Education and Allied Professions. He also served as Director of the Center for Education and Cultural Studies, and held the title of Renowned Scholar-in-Residence at Miami University (the youngest professor to receive this title) before being recruited by U.C.L.A. in 1993, a year after the Los Angeles uprising.

Professor McLaren is the author, co-author, editor and co-editor of approximately forty books and monographs. Several hundred of his articles, chapters, interviews, reviews, commentaries and columns have appeared in dozens of scholarly journals and professional magazines since the publication of his first book, Cries from the Corridor, in 1980.

Some of the journals in which Professor McLaren’s work has appeared include: The Journal of Advanced Composition , Ethnicities , The Harvard Education Review , Cultural Studies & Critical Methodologies , Philosophy and Social Criticism , Cultural Studies , Educational Theory , Social Text , Strategies , Polygraph , Australian Journal of Education , and the International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education , American Journal of Semiotics , Semiotic Inquiry , Discourse: Theoretical Studies of Media and Culture , Interchange , International Journal of Leadership in Education , Educational Philosophy and Theory , Theoria , Journal of Thought , Educational Policy , Cultural Critique , Monthy Review and Socialist Review .

Professor McLaren’s most recent books include Academic Repression: Reflections from the Academic Industrial Complex (2010), co-edited with Stephen Best and Anthony Nocella (AK Press), The Havoc of Capitalism (2010), co-edited with Donna Houston, Greg Martin, and Juha Suoranta, (Sense Pubications), and A Critical Pedagogy of Consumption (co-edited with Jennifer Sandlin, (Routledge). His forthcoming books include A Critical Pedagogy of Consumption (with Nathalia Jaramillo (Information Age Publishers) and Critical Pedagogy and Marxism (Continuum). Capitalists and Conquerors (Rowman and Littlefield, 2005), Teaching Against Global Capitalism and the New Imperialism (with Ramin Farahmandpur, Rowman and Littlefield, 2005), Red Seminars: Radical Excursions into Educational Theory, Cultural Politics, and Pedagogy (Hampton Press, 2005), Marxism Against Postmodernism in Educational Theory (with Dave Hill, Mike Cole, and Glenn Rikowski, Lexington Books), Che Guevara, Paulo Freire, and the Pedagogy of Revolution (Rowman and Littlefield, 2000), Revolutionary Multiculturalism: Pedagogies of Dissent for the New Millenium , Westview Press, 1997; Counternarratives (with Henry Giroux, Colin Lankshear and Mike Peters, Routledge, 1997), and Critical Pedagogy and Predatory Culture, Routledge, 1995. He is also author of Life in Schools: An Introduction to Critical Pedagogy in the Foundations of Education (Allyn & Bacon) which is now in its fifth edition (2006).

From 1986 -1996, Professor McLaren co-edited a publication series, “Teacher Education and School Reform” for the State University of New York Press (with Henry Giroux) and he also co-edited for Westview Press the series “The Edge: Critical Studies in Educational Theory” (with Joe Kincheloe and Shirley Steinberg) from 1996-1998. He also serves on the editorial 15 of Canadian, U.S. , Latin American and European journals.

Professor McLaren is an Associate of Massey College, Canada, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and Commerce, England. He also has served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Latino Museum of History, Art, and Culture in downtown Los Angeles .

Professor McLaren has presented distinguished lectures at a number of North American, European and Latin American universities and continues to speak and write from a transdisciplinary perspective in four areas for which he has become well-known internationally: critical pedagogy, multicultural education, critical ethnography, and critical theory. He lectures regularly throughout Latin America and Europe. His works have been translated (or are being currently translated) into twenty-five languages.

McLaren’s book, “Life in Schools: An Introduction to Critical Pedagogy in the Foundations of Education” (Allyn & Bacon), has been named one of the 12 most significant writings by foreign authors in the field of educational theory, policy and practice by the Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences; the list includes Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Paulo Freire and Deschooling Society by Ivan Illich. See:

Professor McLaren is the inaugural recipient of the Paulo Freire Social Justice Award presented by Chapman University, California, April 2002. He also received the Amigo Honorifica de la Comunidad Universitaria de esta Institucion by La Universidad Pedagogica Nacional, Unidad 141, Guadalajara, Mexico. In the summer of 2007 he was the featured speaker for the Culture of Peace Distinguished Speaker Series at the Culture of Peace Resource Center, Santa Monica , California , where he was presented with the Liberty Medal by Soka Gakkai International-USA, a Buddhist organization with 12 million members worldwide. He was a recipient of a “Lilly Scholarship” at Miami University of Ohio, guest-lectured at the University of British Columbia, Canada, as a “Noted Scholar”, presented the Eminent Scholar Lecture at The Ohio State University, delivered the Claude A. Eggerston Lecture at the Annual Meeting of the Comparative and International Education Society, presented the Harold Wolpe Memorial Lecture at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa. Four of his books have been winners of the American Education Studies Association Critics Choice Awards for outstanding books in education. He was recently made Chair of the Advisory Board of the International Association of Educators, and Director of its Education and Politics Division. He has recently become the inaugural recipient of the International Activist Scholar Award for the Advancement of Marxist Theory and Practice, awarded by the Institute for Education Policy Studies, June, 2006.

In 2005, a group of Mexican scholars and activists estabished La Fundacion McLaren to promote the development of critical pedagogy in Latin America ( see: ). A special Peter McLaren Chair (Catedra Peter McLaren) was established at La Universidad Bolivariana de Venezuela in Caracas on September 15, 2006. He serves in the capacity of  Cooperantes Internacionales for Centro Internacional Miranda, Venezuela. He is a member of the Industrial Workers of the World.

Peter McLaren’s papers are housed and on permanent exhibit at the Paulo and Nita Freire Center for International Critical Pedagogy, McGill University, Montreal, Canada.

He is the recent recipient of a doctorate, honoris causa,  from the Universidad del Salvador, Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2010, and the Paulo Freire Distinguished Research Award from the Paulo Freire SIG, American Educational Research Association, 2010.

Sandy Grande


Sandy GrandeSandy Grande is a professor in the education department and a faculty fellow in the Holleran Center for Community Action and Public Policy (2011-2013). She has served in a number of administrative capacities at the College including Special Adviser to the President for Institutional Equity and Diversity (2004-2005) and faculty representative on the Strategic Planning Committee (2003-2004). In 2004 she was also appointed to chair the committee to develop the Center for Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity (CCSRE) at the College, which was subsequently established in 2005.

Among her many honors and awards, Professor Grande was named as a “founding scholar” to The Paulo and Nita Freire International Project for Critical Pedagogy at McGill University, CA. As part of this project she was invited to attend an international meeting of Freire-ian scholars in Baeza, Spain (2009).

In 2011 she was appointed to serve as a member to the EPA’s National Environmental Justice Advisory Council’s Indigenous People’s Work Group. She currently serves as consultant-evaluator to the American Indian College Fund/Kellogg Foundation’s Wakanyeja Sacred Little Ones Early Childhood Education Initiative. She is the founder and director of the Tecumseh Institute, a Think Tank for Native American and Indigenous Public Policy and Intellectual Discourse based in New York City. She has also served as committee member on the National Education Taskforce’s Committee on Race and Ethnicity since 2007 and has been an advisory board member for the National Science Foundation and Oregon Museum of Science and Industry’s Generations of Knowledge: Traditional Environmental Knowledge since 2008. She was also named “Higher Education Multicultural Faculty of the Year” (2004) by the Connecticut chapter of the National Association of Multicultural Education (NAME). NAME is an international organization that brings together individuals and groups with an interest in multicultural education from all levels of education, different academic disciplines and diverse educational institutions and occupations.

Her current research examines the intersections between critical theory and American Indian Intellectualism. Her approach is profoundly inter- and cross-disciplinary, and has included the integration of critical Indigenous and Marxist theories of education.

Professor Grande has written several articles including “Beyond the Ecologically Noble Savage: Deconstructing the White Man’s Indian,” Journal of Environmental Ethics; “Critical Theory and American Indian Identity and Intellectualism,” The International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, and “American Indian Geographies of Identity and Power: At the Crossroads of Indigena and Mestizaje,” Harvard Educational Review. She has also peer-reviewed and edited articles including the special issue of Tensôes Mundias/Tensiones Mundales/World Tensions: The Political Economy of Natural Disasters (forthcoming in 2013) and the “Confessions of a Fulltime Indian” in the Journal of Curriculum and Pedagogy (2011). Her current manuscript in progress is titled Pedagogy of the Dispossessed: Decolonization and the Struggle for Critical Democracy.

As a teacher and scholar, Professor Grande centers her work in the belief that education is the heart of a critical democracy. She asserts that questions about education cannot be reduced to disciplinary parameters, but must include issues of power, history, self-identity and the possibility of collective agency and revolutionary struggle. Thus, rather than reject the language of politics, Professor Grande constructs teaching as the link between public education and the imperatives of democracy. Moreover, in her work with Indigenous schools and communities, Professor Grande draws connections between the political project of forming a new critical democracy and the Indigenous struggle for self-determination and tribal sovereignty. Professor Grande teaches Foundations of Education, Methods of Teaching, and Public Policy and Social Ethics. In addition to these courses, she has also taught courses in the History of American Education and the Pedagogy of Revolution.