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Ford, Derek R., PhD - Faculty Bio

Ford, Derek R., PhD




Personal Website
Education Studies, Harrison Hall, Room 218

Education Studies 

Assistant Professor of Education Studies

I think and teach at the nexus of educational theory and contemporary politics, and am generally concerned with ways that pedagogy can help us re-imagine and re-enact our ways of being together. I’ve written a few books and published in a variety of journals. Pagrave just published my most recent monograph, Marxism, pedagogy, and the general intellect: Beyond the knowledge economy. My latest edited book, Keywords in radical philosophy and education, came out in 2019--with the help of three education studies students. Other writing has appeared in popular outlets such as Monthly Review, Black Agenda Report, and the Hampton Institute. I recently helped create a podcast series, Reading Capital with Comrades, which takes listeners through volume 1 of Marx's magnum opus and is available on all major streaming platforms.

I’m associate editor of Postdigital Science and Education and deputy editor of the Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies--which I work on with an education studies intern. I co-edit three book series, including Radical politics and education, and am the chair of the education department at the Hampton Institute and editor of Liberation School. You can see my cv here.


EDUC 170: Foundations of education
EDUC 197: We can't breathe: Identity, capitalism, and air conditions
EDUC 197: Urban revolutions: Space, capitalism, and social change
EDUC 197: The politics of sound: Education and the struggle over listening
EDUC 223: Deconstructing differences
EDUC 275: Radical philosophy and education
EDUC 325: History of American education
EDUC 360: Political economy of schools
EDUC 390: Pedagogy in the 'post-truth' era
EDUC 390: Philosophy and alternative educational spaces
EDUC 412: Critical disability studies in education
EDUC 480: Educational research
EDUC 490: Senior research seminar
UNIV 183: (North) Korea in Japan: Colonialism and education
UNIV 184: The Baltimore Rebellion: Anatomy of an uprising

* denotes DPU student


Journal articles

  • Ford, D., & Esposito, M.* (in press). Encountering beyond the present: Historical materialism and sonic pedagogies for resisting  abstraction. Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies.
  • Ford, D. (in press). Sonic directions to the urban student: Lyotard, the megalopolis, and not listening as pedagogy. Contemporary Music Review.
  • Ford, D., & Sasaki, M.* (online first). The multitude beyond measure: Building a common stupor. Educational Philosophy and Theory.
  • Ford, D. (online first). The sonic aesthetics of writing: Timbre, pedagogy, and thought. Pedagogy, Culture, and Society.
  • Jandric, C., & Ford, D. (online first). Postdigital ecopedagogies: Genealogies, contradictions, and possible futures. Postdigital Science and Education.
  • Ford, D. (2021). Pedagogically reclaiming Marx's politics in the postdigital age: Social formations and Althusserian pedagogical gestures. Postdigital Science and Education, 3(3), 851-869.
  • Ford, D. (2020). The aesthetics of exodus: Virno and Lyotard on art, timbre, and the general intellect. Cultural Politics, 16(2), 253-269.
  • Ford, D. (2020). Errant learning in foams: Glissant, Sloterdijk, and the foam of pedagogy. Studies in Philosophy and Education, 39(3), 245-256.
  • Ford, D. (2019). Explosions of stupidity: Notes for an urbanist pedagogy. Educational Theory, 69(2), 153-167.
  • Ford, D. (2019). Pedagogy of the "not:" Negation, exodus, and postdigital temporal regimes. Postdigital Science and Education, 1(1), 104-118.
  • Ford, D., & Jandric, P. (2019). The public intellectual is dead--long live the public intellectual! The postdigital rebirth of public pedagogy. Critical Questions in Education, 10(2), 92-106.
  • Ford, D., & Lewis, T. (2018). On the freedom to be opaque monsters: Communist pedagogy, aesthetics, and the sublime. Cultural Politics, 14(1), 95-108.
  • Ford, D. (2018). Queer communist study: The sinthomostudier against the capital-debt-learning regime. Journal of Curriculum and Pedagogy, 15(1), 8-23.
  • Ford, D., & Zhao, W. (2018). Toward an educational sphereology: Air, wind, and materialist pedagogy. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 50(5), 528-537.
  • Zhao, W., & Ford, D. (2018). Re-imagining affect with study: Implications from a Daoist wind story and yin-yang movement. Studies in Philosophy and Education, 37(2), 109-121.
  • Ford, D. (2017). Making marxist pedagogy magical: From critique to imagination, or how bookkeepers set us free. Critical Education, 8(9), 1-13.
  • Ford, D. (2017). Studying like a communist: Affect, the party, and the educational limits to capitalism. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 49(5), 452-461.
  • Ford, D. (2016). A pedagogy for space: Teaching, learning, and studying in the Baltimore Rebellion. Policy Futures in Education, 14(2), 176-193.
  • Ford, D. (2016). Revolutionary parallel pedagogy: A critical teacher education for the multitude. Issues in Teacher Education, 25(2), 55-67.
  • Ford, D. (2016). Joining the party: Critical education and the question of organization. Critical Education, 7(15), 1-18.
  • Ford, D. (2015). The pneumatic common: Learning in, with and from the air. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 47(13-14), 1405-1418.
  • Ford, D. (2015). A figural education with Lyotard. Studies in Philosophy and Education, 34(1), 89-100.
  • Ford, D. (2014). Spatializing marxist educational theory: School, the built-environment, fixed capital, and (relational) space. Policy Futures in Education, 12(6), 784-793.
  • Ford, D. (2014). A critical pedagogy of ineffability: Identity, education, and the secret life of whatever. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 46(4), 380-392.
  • Ford, D. (2013). Butler goes to work: A political economy of the subject. borderlands e-journal, 12(1), 1-19.
  • Ford, D. (2013). Toward a theory of the educational encounter: Gert Biesta's educational theory and the right to the city. Critical Studies in Education, 54(3), 299-310.

Edited books and journal issues

  • Zhao, W., Ford, D., & Lewis, T. (2020). Re-invoking global dialogues on learning, unlearning, and studying. Studies in Philosophy and Education, 39(3).
  • Ford, D. (2019). Keywords in radical philosophy and education: Common concepts for contemporary movements. Boston: Brill. (*with editorial assistants Anneliese Waalkes '20, Savannah Jo Wilcek '20, and Clayton Cooprider '19)
  • Ford, D., & Malott, C. (2019). Learning with Lenin: Selected works on education and revolution. Charlotte: Information Age Publishing.
  • Means, A., Ford, D., & Slater, G. (2017). Educational commons in theory and practice: Global pedagogy and politics. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Ford, D. (2017). Lefebvre’s teachings. Special issue of Policy Futures in Education, 15(4).
  • Ford, D., Porfilio, B., & Goldstein, R. (2015). The media and the neoliberal privatization of education. Special issue of Critical Education, 6(7-16).
  • Porfilio, B., & Ford, D. (2015). Leaders in critical pedagogy: Narratives for understanding and solidarity. Boston: Brill-Sense.

Book chapters

  • Pappachen, M.*, & Ford, D. (in press). Spreading stupidity: Disability and anti-imperialist resistance to bio-informational capitalism. In M. Peters, P. Jandric, and S. Hayes (Eds.), Bioinformational philosophy and postdigital knowledge ecologies. New York: Springer.
  • Ford, D., Swenson, K*, & Fosher, M*. (in press). From the knowable and transparent individual to the secret thought of individuation: An anti-capitalist postdigital ecopedagogy. In P. Jandric & D. Ford (Eds.), Postdigital ecopedagogies (New York: Springer).
  • Chambers, C., & Ford, D. (2022). Communism: The party - Pedagogy and revolution from Marx to China. In A. Maisuria (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Marxism and education. Boston: Brill.
  • Ford, D. (2021). Pedagogy of the oppressed for revolution: Paulo Freire and revolutionary leadership. In N. Brown (Ed.), Revolutionary education: Theory and practice for socialist organizers. San Francisco: Liberation Media.
  • Ford, D., & Sasaki, M.* (2021). Listening like a postdigital human: The politics and knowledge of noise. In M. Savin-Baden (Ed.), Postdigital humans: Transitions, transformations, and transcendence. New York: Springer.
  • Ford, D. (2020). A communist theory of writing: Virno, Lyotard, and a rewriting of the general intellect. In M. Peters, T. Besley, P. Jandric, and X. Zhu (Eds.), Knowledge socialism: The rise of peer production: Collegiality, collaboration, and collective intelligence. New York: Springer.
  • Ford, D. (2020). Lefebvre and atmospheric production: An architectronics of air. In M.E. Leary-Owhin & J.P. McCarthy (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of Henri Lefebvre, the city, and urban society. New York: Routledge.
  • Ford, D., Waalkes, A.*, Wilcek, S.*, & Cooprider, C.* (2019). An introduction, a wager: Long live radical philosophy and education! In D. Ford (Ed.), Keywords in radical philosophy and education (Boston: Brill).
  • Ford, D., & Lewis, T. (2019). Lyotard and the sublime unconscious of education: Communicative capitalism and aesthetics. In A. Chinnery (Ed.), Philosophy of Education 2017. Urbana: Philosophy of Education Society.
  • Ford, D. (2018). Don't bring truth to a gun fight: Pedagogy, force, and decision. In M. Peters et. al. (Eds.), Post-truth, fake news: Viral modernity and higher education. New York: Springer.
  • McLaren, P., & Ford, D. (2018). Revolutionary critical pedagogy and the struggle against capital today. In L. Rasinski, D. Hill, & S. Skordoulis (Eds.), Marxism and education: International perspectives on theory and action. New York: Routledge.
  • John, K., & Ford, D. (2017). The rural is nowhere: Bringing Indigeneity and urbanism into educational research. In W. Reynolds (Ed.), Forgotten places: Critical rural education studies. New York: Peter Lang.
  • Ford, D. (2016). The air conditions of philosophy of education: Toward a microsphereology of the classroom. In E. Duarte (Ed.), Philosophy of Education 2015. Urbana: Philosophy of Education Society.
  • Ford, D. (2015). From standardized testing to the war on Libya: The privatization of U.S. education in international context. In B. Porfilio & M. Abendroth (Eds.), Understanding neoliberal rule in K-12 schools: Educational fronts for local and global justice. Charlotte: Information Age Publishing.
  • Malott, C., & Ford, D. (2015). Teaching Ferguson, teaching capital: Slavery and the "terrorist energy" of capital. In C. Jenkins (Ed.), The 2016 Hampton reader. New York: Hampton Institute Press.
  • Porfilio, B., & Ford, D. (2015). The corporate-military-governmental milieu. In M. Fang, B. Schultz, & W. Schubert (Eds.), The Sage guide to curriculum in education. London: Sage.
Recent popular articles, interviews, and editorials


Ph.D., Cultural Foundations of Education, Syracuse University, 2015
M.S., Cultural Foundations of Education, Syracuse University, 2012
B.A., Peace Studies, Goucher College, 2008