About Susan Jean Mayer

Susan has taught in teacher education programs at Brandeis and Northeastern Universities and worked in secondary textbook development. In addition to her ongoing research and scholarship, she is currently collaborating on a start-up effort to publish exploratory classroom curricula, Critical Exploration Press, and was a founding member of Critical Explorers, Inc., which conducts inquiry-based curricular research and design residencies. An edited book, Looking and Listening for Learning: Critical Exploration in Teacher Education, has recently been sent out for review.

Susan is also Editor of the Journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Curriculum Studies, an open-access online journal that publishes critical essays on current and historical texts relevant to the field of curriculum theory. Links to essays she has written for JAAACS can be found below.

Critical Review Essays by Susan Jean Mayer

Risking Ourselves in Classrooms - Considers Gert Biesta’s 2014 text, The Beautiful Risk of Education, in which Biesta draws upon post-war Continental philosophy in support of his call for the thoughtful nurture of subjectification processes within schools.

Engendering Knowledge and its Nurture - Considers each of the five major historical studies represented in Petra Monroe Hendry’s towering 2011 text, Engendering Curriculum History, touching also on Madeleine Grumet’s classic feminist work, Bitter Milk.

Of Policy, Poetry, and the Potent Notion of Intelligence - Responds critically to the diverse arguments presented in Joe Kincheloe’s 2004 edited text, Multiple Intelligences Reconsidered, in which a range of authors respond critically to Howard Gardner’s now classic text on the nature of intelligence.

Getting it Right: Keeping it Complicated - Responds critically to Kieran Egan’s 2002 text, Getting it Wrong from the Beginning: Our Progressivist Inheritance from Herbert Spencer, John Dewey, and Jean Piaget, in which Egan suggests that deep flaws in Herbert Spencer’s reasoning have always compromised and continue to haunt progressive educational theory.