Third Year PhD Candidate / Postgraduate Teaching Assistant
Maja holds a Diploma (Qualified Teacher) in English and French Language and Literature from the University of Zadar, Croatia and a Master of Arts in Postmodern Fiction from Aberystwyth University, Wales. At the moment, she is completing her PhD in English Literature at the University of Edinburgh where she was awarded the Edinburgh Global Overseas Research Scholarship as well as the Global Supplementary Grant from the Open Society Foundation. For the past two years, Maja has worked at the University of Edinburgh as a Postgraduate Teaching Assistant in Scottish Literature. In June 2012, Maja has co-organised an international conference on the Communication and Construction of Monstrous Embodiment. In September 2013, she has co-organised an international symposium Critical Pedagogies: Equality and Diversity in a Changing Institution and is currently developing a co-edited Special Issue based on the event. She also co-organised and facilitated a number of events such as the Work in Progress seminars, Black History month lectures, workshop and film showings and the Postcolonial Studies Reading Group. Maja was the Education Co-ordinator and founding member of Hollaback! Edinburgh, a local branch of an international organisation strategising against street harassment, co-organising community based events and workshops.
In her spare time, Maja enjoys science fiction, horror films and climbing mountains.
Maja’s doctoral thesis focuses on the ancestor figure in African American women writers’ neo-slave narratives and the post-Civil Rights discourses surrounding the legacy of slavery and figurations of culturally-specific African American traditions by closely reading novels by Margaret Walker, Gayl Jones, Octavia Butler, Toni Morrison, Alice Walker and Phyllis Alesia Perry. Drawing on critical race and whiteness studies, feminist and trauma theory, the thesis explores the prevailing effects of slavery on subsequent generations and the ways in which diverse ancestral figures challenge and complexify post-racial discourses as well as appropriative and hegemonic histories, with a particular emphasis on blues music, quilting, writing and domestic work.
In addition to African American literature, neo-slave narratives and the Black Atlantic, Maja’s research interests include Indigenous narratives and more broadly, critical race and whiteness studies, digital humanities, postcolonial, feminist and trauma theory and pedagogy.
This article was published on Mar 23, 2011