Queer Theory

Postcolonial Fiction

Contemporary Film

Disability Studies

Biotechnologies (especially organ transplantation)

Medical Humanities

Monster Theory


KVIK201: Theories of Gender Studies

KVIK206: Embodiment, Biopolitics and Technologies

MNF490: Theory of Science and Ethics


  • McCormack, Donna. 2014. Queer postcolonial narratives and the ethics of witnessing. Bloomsbury Academic. 224 pages. ISBN: 978-1-4411-1100-5.
Journal articles
  • Hellstrand, Ingvil Førland; Orning, Sara Elisabeth Sellevold; Koistinen, Aino-Kaisa; Henriksen, Line; McCormack, Donna. 2018. Welcome to the Monster Network. Fafnir. 4: 80-83.
  • McCormack, Donna. 2016. Transplant temporalities and deadly reproductive futurity in Alejandro González Iñárritu’s 21 Grams. European Journal of Cultural Studies. 19: 51-68. doi: 10.1177/1367549415585549
  • McCormack, Donna; Salmenniemi, Suvi. 2016. The biopolitics of precarity and the self. European Journal of Cultural Studies. 19: 3-15. doi: 10.1177/1367549415585559
  • McCormack, Donna. 2015. Hopeful Monsters: A Queer Hope of Evolutionary Difference. Somatechnics. doi: 10.3366/soma.2015.0159
  • McCormack, Donna; Riggs, Damien. 2015. The Ethics of Biomedical Tourism. Somatechnics.
  • McCormack, Donna. 2014. Posthumanist Ethics and Organ Transplantation. Tidsskrift for kjønnsforskning. 173-178.
  • McCormack, Donna. 2012. Intimate Borders: The Ethics of Human Organ Transplantation in Contemporary Film. Review of Education/Pedagogy/Cultural Studies. 34: 170-183.
  • McCormack, Donna. 2011. Multisensory Poetics and Politics in Shani Mootoo’s 'The Wild Woman in the Woods' and 'Valmiki’s Daughter'. The Journal of West Indian Literature. 19: 9-33.
  • McCormack, Donna. 2009. Gender and Colonial Transitioning: Frantz Fanon’s Algerian Freedom Fighters in Moroccan and Caribbean Novels? Journal of Transatlantic Studies. 7: 279-293.
  • McCormack, Donna. 2006. “Dreaming Across the Sea”: Queer Postcolonial Belongings in Shani Mootoo’s Novels. Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association E-Journal. 2.

More information in national current research information system (CRIStin)


Queer Postcolonial Narratives and the Ethics of Witnessing (New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2014). 


Co-Edited with Damien W. Riggs, Special Issue of Somatechnics (2015).

Co-Edited with Suvi Salmenniemi, Special Issue of European Journal of Cultural Studies (forthcoming 2015).


'Transplant Temporalities and Deadly Reproductive Futurity in Alejandro González Iñárritu’s 21 Grams', European Journal of Cultural Studies (forthcoming 2015).

'Hopeful Monsters: A Queer Hope of Evolutionary Difference', Somatechnics (forthcoming 2015).

'The Biopolitics of Precarity and the Self', European Journal of Cultural Studies (forthcoming 2015), co-authored with Suvi Salmenniemi.

'The Ethics of Biomedical Tourism', Somatechnics 5.1 (2015), 1–11, co-authored with Damien Riggs

'Posthumanist Ethics and Organ Transplantation', Tidsskrift for kjønnsforskning (2014), 173–78.

'Intimate Borders: The Ethics of Organ Transplantation in Contemporary Film', The Review of Education, Pedagogy and Cultural Studies 34.3–4 (2012), 170–83.

'Multisensory Poetics and Politics in Shani Mootoo's The Wild Woman in the Woods and Valmiki's Daughter', The Journal of West Indian Literature 19.2 (2011), 9–33.

'Gender and Colonial Transitioning: Frantz Fanon's Algerian Freedom Fighters in Moroccan and Caribbean Novels?' Journal of Transatlantic Studies 7.3 (2009), 279–93.

'Intersections of Lesbian and Postcolonial Studies: One Possible Future for Class', Journal of Lesbian Studies 11.3–4 (2007), 213–21.

'Queer Postcolonial Space: Forging Ethical Practices Out of Violence in Shani Mootoo's Literary Works', Canadian Studies in Europe 6 (2007), 237–50.

'"Dreaming Across the Sea": Queer Postcolonial Belonging in Shani Mootoo's Novels', Journal of Critical Race and Whiteness Studies 2.2 (2006). 


‘The Transplant Imaginary and Its Postcolonial Hauntings’, in Erik Malmqvist and Kristin Zeiler (eds.), Bodily Exchanges, Bioethics and Border Crossing (London: Routledge, November 2015).

'Illicit Intimacies, The Rāmāyana and Synaesthetic Remembering in Shani Mootoo's Valmiki's Daughter, in Mariam Pirbhai and Joy Mohabir (eds.), Critical Perspectives on Indo-Caribbean Women's Literature (New York: Routledge, 2012), pp. 203–28.



PhD (2009) in Postcolonial and Queer Theories and Literature, University of Leeds.

MA (2003) in Sexual Dissidence and Cultural Change, University of Sussex.

BA Hons. (2000) in French Language and Literature, University of Leeds.


Organ transplantation, most commonly, enables the extension of life by removing organs from cadaveric donors and suturing the viscera into an ill body. Human life is revitalised through ‘foreign’ flesh and sustained through persistent technological, pharmaceutical and clinical interventions. Transferred from one human to another, the organ becomes a part of someone else’s body and their sense of self. Whilst transplant teams refuse to engage with the possibility that these parts may carry traces of their donors (basing their scientific models on the Cartesian split between the mind and the body), many recipients report a disturbance in their post-transplantation sense of self. My research explores the tensions between biomedical rhetoric and fictive representations of organ donation, addressing how the human comes into being during and after this biotechnological intervention. Without seeking to prove or disprove that memories or personality traits may be transferred through body parts, this project investigates the cultural significance of such potentialities and the possible ramifications for graft therapies.

My research focus is biotechnological interventions and embodied identity formation and I situate this analysis in the broader socio-cultural meanings of organ transplantation. I am interested in how literature and film create a tension between the viscerality of individual and social identity and the emotionality and historiography of national belonging. I therefore examine the extent to which organ transfer is an embodied metaphor for socio-cultural anxieties concerning the borders between (individual and national) self and (‘foreign’) other. Transplantation necessitates an opening up to the other, a literal openness to the other who is putatively different, alien and separate. This project is concerned with the extent to which representations of transplantation are embodied metaphors for national hospitality, transnational (legal and illegal) migrations, and violence towards ‘different’ others.