Doing Academia Differently: In Conversation with Neuroatypicality

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This free webinar series, with 10 total sessions, meets monthly on the topic of doing academia differently through conversations with neuroatypicality. Each session involves one or two international guests who have had some experience with neuroatypicality in the context of higher education.


Each panelist will discuss the following:

  1. What does neuroatypicality mean for higher education?
  2. How might higher education be differently configured from the viewpoint of neuroatypicality?
  3. What does neuroatypicality have to offer higher education politically, ethically, ontologically and epistemologically (politico-ethico-onto-epistemologically)?
  4. How might neuroatypicality as an alternative politico-ethico-onto-epistemology intersect with decolonial and postcolonial debates in higher education?

Invited guest speakers will discuss their experiences of neuroatypicality in higher education and think about how to do academia differently through these experiences. The speakers locate themselves in a variety of philosophical and theoretical approaches which underpin their practices and experiences with neuroatypicality in higher education. The invited panelists also suggest several readings for webinar attendees to read prior to the webinar, although this is not a prerequisite for participating in the webinar series (see list of readings).


  • Webinars are on the third Thursday of the month (unless otherwise noted)
  • 1 ½ hour duration with hosts interviewing the panelist(s) then time for questions from attendees
  • Zoom links will be added throughout the year

We invite faculty members, activists involved with neuroatypicality and mad studies and students to join this online learning space. Our goal is to record and make publicly available the webinars with permission from panelists. Please see detailed information below.

Previously recorded webinars

You can access past recordings on the Doing Academia Differently: In conversation with Neuroatypicality youtube channel.


University of Missouri System logo seal
University of the Western Cape, South Africa
Ghent University logo

This webinar series is made possible by a Tri-Continental (3C) Partnership which is a trilateral agreement between the University of Missouri, the University of the Western Cape, and Ghent University. The Tri-Continental (3C) Partnership set up a fund to promote partnership between these three institutions during a time of travel restrictions due to the global pandemic. The funds were provided to support virtual research and teaching collaborations between faculty members at the three institutions. We are grateful for our universities’ long-time collaboration and support of this webinar series. 


If you have questions about the webinar series, accessing the Zoom webinar link, and/or need assistance in accessing the suggested readings, please email Nike Romano at

Invited Speakers and Suggested Readings

Erin ManningOctober 14, 2021 • Erin Manning

9:30 am Central Standard Time in the U.S., 4:30 pm Cape Town, SA time zones

Research Chair, Speculative Pragmatism, Art, and Pedagogy; Director, Interdisciplinary PhD in the Humanities & Faculty of Fine Arts; and Director, SenseLab at Concordia University

Erin Manning studies in the interstices of philosophy, aesthetics and politics, concerned, always, about alter-pedagogical and alter-economic practices. 3e is the direction her current research takes – an exploration of the transversality of the three ecologies, the social, the environmental and the conceptual. An iteration of 3e is a land-based project north of Montreal where living and learning is explored. Legacies of SenseLab infuse the project, particularly the question of how collectivity is crafted in a more-than human encounter with worlds in the making.

Zoom webinar link: Passcode: 068997

Suggested reading: Manning, E. 2020. For a Pragmatics of the Useless. Durham & London: Duke University Press.

Peter SmagorinskyNovember 18, 2021 • Peter Smagorinsky

9:30 am Central Standard Time in the U.S., 4:30pm Cape Town, SA time zones

Distinguished Research Professor at The University of Georgia, emeritus; and Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the Universidad de Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.

Peter’s interest in neurodiversity began with his recognition that he and family members are on the autism spectrum, along with other neuro-atypical conditions. His interest in neurodiversity has produced a number of articles and chapters, and two recent edited collections:Creativity and Community among Autism-Spectrum Youth: Creating Positive Social Updrafts through Play and Performance from Palgrave Macmillan; and, coedited with Joe Tobin and Kyunghwa Lee, Dismantling the Disabling Environments of Education: Creating New Cultures and Contexts for Accommodating Difference from Peter Lang.

Zoom webinar link:

Suggested Readings: