Place, Race, and Identity Formation: Autobiographical Intersections in a Curriculum Theorist's Daily Life, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Place, Race, and Identity Formation

Autobiographical Intersections in a Curriculum Theorist's Daily Life, 1st Edition

By Ed Douglas McKnight


200 pages | 4 B/W Illus.

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In this work of curriculum theory, Ed Douglas McKnight addresses and explores the intersections between place (with specific discussion of Kincheloe’s and Pinar’s conceptualization of place and identity) and race (specifically Winthrop Jordan’s historical analysis of race as an Anglo-European construction that became the foundation of a white mythos). To that end, he employs a form of narrative construction called curriculum vitae (course of life)—a method of locating and delineating identity formation which addresses how theories of place, race and identity formation play out in a particular concrete life.

By working through how place racializes identity and existence, the author engages in a long Southern tradition of storytelling, but in a way that turns it inside out. Instead of telling his own story as a means to romanticize the sins of the southern past, he tells a new story of growing up within the "white" discourse of the Deep South in the 1960s and 70s, tracking how his racial identity was created and how it has followed him through life. Significant in this narrative is how the discourse of whiteness and place continues to express itself even within the subject position of a curriculum theorist teaching in a large Deep South university. The book concludes with an elaboration on the challenges of engaging in the necessary anti-racist complicated conversation within education to begin to work through and cope with heavy racialized inheritances.

Table of Contents

Introduction: A bricoleur’s search for a curriculum theory of race and place: conversār


Chapter 1: Symbolic narratives as told by ghosts and bones: Situating race, place, and a beginning story gone bad in the Deep South


Chapter 2: A racialized history of my place, Shreveport, Louisiana: The Red River, the "land of churches," and the "lynching capital of the world"


Chapter 3: Part 1: Critical autobiography of my racialization: The gift of a North Louisiana map and a story to live by


Chapter 4: Part 2: Critical autobiography of my racialization: The bones begin to speak but the ghosts fight back


Chapter 5: The trials and not-so-tribulations of a Deep South, white male curriculum theorist fumbling toward a complicated conversation with students: Being better than my ghosts

About the Author

Ed Douglas McKnight is Professor of Curriculum Studies and Foundations, The University of Alabama, USA.

About the Series

Studies in Curriculum Theory Series

In this age of multimedia information overload, scholars and students may not be able to keep up with the proliferation of different topical, trendy book series in the field of curriculum theory. It will be a relief to know that one publisher offers a balanced, solid, forward-looking series devoted to significant and enduring scholarship, as opposed to a narrow range of topics or a single approach or point of view. This series is conceived as the series busy scholars and students can trust and depend on to deliver important scholarship in the various "discourses" that comprise the increasingly complex field of curriculum theory.

The range of the series is both broad (all of curriculum theory) and limited (only important, lasting scholarship) – including but not confined to historical, philosophical, critical, multicultural, feminist, comparative, international, aesthetic, and spiritual topics and approaches. Books in this series are intended for scholars and for students at the doctoral and, in some cases, master's levels.

Persons interested in submitting book proposals or in serving as reviewers for this series are invited to contact

Professor William F. Pinar

Canada Research Chair
University of British Columbia

Faculty of Education

Department of Curriculum Studies

2125 Main Mall

Vancouver, British Columbia V6T 1Z4


EMAIL: [email protected]

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Curricula
EDUCATION / Philosophy & Social Aspects