Curriculum Vitae

Research Interests

  • Queer and gendered experiences in the late medieval and early modern Europe.
  • How visual and material culture reflects intellectual and cultural histories.


2015 – 2019 University of Toronto, Honours Bachelor of Arts, majors in History and Art History, minor in History of Religions

Selected Coursework

Belief and Power in Medieval Communities; The Lifecycle in Medieval and Early Modern Europe; The Renaissance City; and Colonial Intersections and Witchcraft in the Early Modern World.

Research Experience

Fall 2018, Independent Study Project, Sodomy in Medieval and Early Modern Europe, supervised by Dr. Mairi Cowan

  • Designed and developed an independent study course, including selecting the readings and designing assignments.
  • The course examines sodomy as it was understood in medieval and early modern Europe through its legal, religious, and social implications via an intersectional analysis of gender, sexed bodies, and social status.

2016-2019, Research Assistant for Dr. Evonne Levy, Department of Visual Studies,
University of Toronto Mississauga

  • Manuscript preparation, including copyediting a paper and preparing a bibliography.
  • Archival, library, and web research to find articles and books.
  • Work on the History of Art History in Canada Project (1933-present), including gathering and interpreting data, working on the website, keeping detailed and accurate records, and working collaboratively with shared files.

2018-2019, Internship, Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives

  • Producing RAD compliant finding aids and fond descriptions.
  • Designing, researching, and developing an exhibition on nonbinary identities in Canada in the OMEKA platform to be hosted on the CLGA website.


Mara-McKay, Nico. “Becoming Gendered: Two Medieval Approaches to Intersex Gender Assignment.” Prandium: The Journal of Historical Studies at University of Toronto Mississauga 7:1 (2008).

Mara-McKay, Nico. “Marvellous Anxiety: Horror Painting in Seventeenth Century Naples.” Crossing Borders: A Multidisciplinary Journal of Undergraduate Scholarship. (Under consideration.)

Teaching Experience

Fall 2017, Teaching Assistant for Dr. Christopher Petrakos, UTM116 Happiness,
University of Toronto Mississauga

  • The course investigated the concept of happiness from its earliest articulations to today, across time and place, and drew on a wide array of sources in disciplines in the social sciences and humanities, particularly history and philosophy.
  • Developed and prepared lectures and discussion material for two tutorials comprised of 30 students each (60 students total), including reading assignments, essay writing, formatting Chicago Manual of Style, and quizzes.
  • Graded student attendance and essays for content and style.
  • Received the Teaching Assistant Award from the Department of Historical Studies for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Honours and Awards

  • UTM Experiential Learning Bursary, 2018
  • Joseph Alfred Whealey Incourse Scholarship for 2015-2015, 2016-2017, and 2017-2018
  • Dean’s List Scholar for 2015-2016, 2016-2017, and 2017-2018
  • Teaching Assistant Award, Department of Historical Studies, for 2017-2018
  • Best Exhibition Proposal in Curatorial Studies Award, Fall 2017
  • University of Toronto Excellence Award in Social Sciences and Humanities, 2017
  • Marjorie E. Simonds Travel Award, 2017
  • History Emeriti Award, Department of Historical Studies, for 2015-2016


Papers Presented

Mara-McKay, Nico. “Early Modern English Witch Bottles and the Logic of Counteractive Magic.” Paper presented at the Experience and Expression in the Renaissance: Exploring Early Modern Media Conference by the Association of Renaissance Studies, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, 15 March 2019.

Mara-McKay, Nico. “Becoming Gendered: Two Medieval Approaches to Intersex Gender Assignment.” Paper presented at the Second Annual Prandium Conference, University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, ON, 19 March 2018.

Mara-McKay, Nico. “Katherina Hetzeldorfer and the Consequences of a Woman Living as a Heterosexual Man in Fifteenth-Century Germany.” Paper presented at Revealing the Renaissance: (De)constructing Early Modern Identities, Fourth Annual Conference by the Association of Renaissance Studies, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, 16 March 2018.

Mara-McKay, Nico. “The Materiality of Meret Oppenheim’s Surrealist Objects.” Paper presented at Back to Basics: Materials and Process, the Third Annual History of Art Undergraduate Conference, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, 17 March 2017.


Mara-McKay, Nico. “The Future of (Chaos) Magick.” Talk presented at Flambeau Noir, Ottawa, ON, 30 April 2017.

Mara-McKay, Nico. “The History of Tarot Visuals.” Talk presented at First Thursdays: Be Magik, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, ON, 3 November 2016.


Mara-McKay, Nico with Salako Kalfou, and April Snellings, moderated by Alison Lang.
“Witch, Please: Myth versus Reality.” Panel presented at Dark Carnival, Hamilton,
ON, 10 July 2016.

Mara-McKay, Nico with Lynx Sainte Marie, Clementine Morrigan, Jenna Danchuk, and Amrit Brar, hosted by Jonathan Valelly. “Magick and the Occult in the Independent Arts.” Panel presented at Canzine, Toronto, ON, 17 October 2015.

Writing and Editing

2016-Present, Copy Editor, Broken Pencil Magazine

  • Copy editing and proofreading for a print magazine devoted to the independent arts.

2016-2019, Computerized Notetaker for Disability Services, George Brown College

  • In-class note taking for Deaf students, where the students have access to the notes in real time, and are provided edited versions afterwards.

2000-Present, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, Spiral Nature Magazine

  • Founder and publisher of a popular online magazine focusing on witchy topics in history and popular culture.
  • Oversee a team of five editors, 7 staff writers, and 50 regular contributors.

2012-2015, Website Administrator, Canadian Women in the Literary Arts

2013, Writer’s Grant, Toronto Arts Council


Renaissance Society of America, Member (2019-Present)

Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship, Member (2018-Present)

Historical Studies Society, Secretary (2018-2019), Marketing Director (2017-2018), Member (2015-2019)

OUT @ UTM, Volunteer Coordinator (2016-2017), Member (2015-2019)

Academic Community Involvement

2018-2019 Secretary (elected executive), Historical Studies Society, UTM

2017-2018 Marketing Director (elected executive), Historical Studies Society, UTM

2017-2019 Volunteer Note Taker, AccessAbility Services, UTM

2016-2017 Volunteer Coordinator (elected executive), OUT @ UTM