Menu Close

Monica Eileen Patterson

Assistant Director and Associate Professor, Curatorial Studies, Institute for Comparative Studies in Literature, Art, and Culture, Carleton University

Dr. Monica Eileen Patterson is Assistant Director of Curatorial Studies in the Institute for Comparative Studies in Literature, Art, and Culture, and Associate Professor in the Institute of Interdisciplinary Studies at Carleton University. She earned her doctorate in Anthropology and History and a certificate in Museum Studies from the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor). Prior to joining the faculty at Carleton, she was a Banting Fellow at the Centre for Ethnographic Research and Exhibition in the Aftermath of Violence at Concordia University.

Patterson is author of several articles and co-editor of two books: Curating Difficult Knowledge: Violent Pasts in Public Places (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011) and Anthrohistory: Unsettling Knowledge and Questioning Discipline (University of Michigan Press, 2011). Currently, she is working on a manuscript that examines the multiple and contested understandings of childhood in late-apartheid South Africa.

Patterson is also an investigator on the SSHRC-funded Partnership project, “Thinking through the Museum: Difficult Knowledge in Public” which brings together researchers, curators, artists, and community members seeking new terms of engagement for learning from histories of violence and conflict. As a scholar, curator, and activist, her work explores the intersections of memory, childhood, and violence in postcolonial Africa, and the ways in which they are represented and engaged in contemporary public spheres.


  • 2014–present
    Assistant professor, Carleton University


Banting Fellow, Fulbright Scholar