Marijana is a PhD researcher on the FWF-funded project Narrative Encounters with Ethnic American Literatures. She is interested in analyzing the ways in which literary texts by contemporary African American authors use empathy and emotion to offer meeting points with the racial Other. Her research builds on the belief that emotional engagements with fiction are important vehicles for renegotiating race, and that cognitive narratological theories are particularly relevant for demonstrating the political potential of storytelling in Ethnic American literature. In her Master’s thesis at the University of Klagenfurt, she already explored the cognitive and emotional potential of African American literature that was written during the Harlem Renaissance movement of the early twentieth century. In 2017, she published her first article, "Environment and Emotion in The Revenant: A Cognitive Approach" using a cognitive approach to film in Aspeers: Emerging Voices in American Studies. Later that year, she spent four months as an exchange student at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. As part of the Narrative Encounters Project, she will explore African American literature from a cognitive cultural perspective.