Deborah de Muijnck

Research and Teaching Assistant at the Chair of English Literary Studies


Deborah de Muijnck is a research and teaching fellow at the Department of English Literature with a focus on Cognitive Narratology and British Literature. She has worked as an online editor in Cologne, Berlin, Dortmund, Munich and Aachen, and travelled around the globe as an analogue photographer until she settled in academia in 2019. 

In September 2022, she completed her dissertation, "Cultural Models of Narrative Identity: The Case of Military Autobiographical Writing," in which she outlines how British soldiers reconstruct their narrative identities after wartime experiences through non-fictional autobiographical narrative using cultural models of narrative identities, as well as narrative methods of trauma incorporation, and narrative neutralization techniques. 

Her other research interests include contemporary and historical literature, medical narratives, narrative criminology, and postcolonial/indigineous narratives. 

Fax Fax: +49 241 80 92656


  • de Muijnck, Deborah. “Life Doesn’t Frighten Me: Narrative Dynamics Between Maya Angelou’s Poetry and selected Drawings of Jean-Michel Basquiat” (Language and Literature, in progress)
  • de Muijnck, Deborah. “Challenging Chrononormative Cultural Life-Scripts: Queer Temporality in Bernardine Evaristo’s Novel Girl, Woman, Other (2020)” (Studies in the Novel Special Issue – “Strange Temporalities: Gender, Time, and the Novel”, edited by Angela Du, and Tara McDonald, in progress)
  • Alber, Jan, Deborah de Muijnck, and Jessica Jumpertz. "Introduction" (Working Title). Pandemic Storytelling, Brill, forthcoming.
  • Alber, Jan, Deborah de Muijnck, and Jessica Jumpertz (eds.). Pandemic Storytelling. Brill, forthcoming.
  • de Muijnck, Deborah, Jessica Jumpertz, Ralf Schneider, and Teresa Turnbull. "Introduction: 4E Cognition, Phenomenology, and the Body-Mind-Nexus" (Working Title). Poetics of Disturbances - Narratives of Non-Normative Minds and Bodies, Brill, forthcoming.
  • Schneider, Ralf, Deborah de Muijnck, Jessica Jumpertz, and Teresa Turnbull. Poetics of Disturbances - Narratives of Non-Normative Minds and Bodies. Brill, forthcoming.
  • de Muijnck, Deborah, Francesca Wessing, Nalin Camur, and Linda Wetzel. "Plot." Introduction to Cognitive Narratology, edited by Jan Alber and Peter Wenzel. Trier: Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Trier, 2021, pp. 119-142.
  • Schneider, Ralf, and Deborah de Muijnck. "Methods of Reception Theory and Cognitive Approaches - From Reception Aesthetics to Cognitive Poetics." Methods of Textual Analysis in Literary Studies: Approaches, Basics, Model Interpretations, edited by Vera Nünning, and Ansgar Nünning. Trier: Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Trier, 2021, pp. 251-72.
  • de Muijnck, Deborah. Review: "Lena Linne. Unlived Lives in English Literature. A Typological Study. " Anglia 138.4, 2020
  • de Muijnck, Deborah. "When Breath Becomes Air: Constructing Stable Narrative Identity During Terminal Illness". Narrative, special issue of Colloquy: Text, Theory, Critique, Issue 38, edited by Calvin Fung, and Giulia Mastrantoni. Melbourne: Monash University, 2019.

Lectures and Presentations

10/2022: “How to finish your dissertation under extreme time constraints”. Eingeladene Gastsprecherin auf der Konferenz Troubling Time(s): Questioning Prevailing Notions of Time in the Study of Literature and Culture, Justus-Liebig Universität, Gießen (Germany), 28.10.2022

06/2022: “A Story of War and All That Follows - Time and Temporality in Post-Trauma Narratives”. Narrative 2022 Conference, University of Chichester, Chichester (United Kingdom). 29.06.2022

06/2021: “Narratives of Displacement - Altruistic Sense-Making through Autobiographical Storytelling in (Former) Refugees”. Konferenz der International Society for the Empirical Study of Literature (IGEL), University of Liverpool, Liverpool (United Kingdom). 23.06.2021

05/2021: “Cultural Models, Narrative Identity and Literary Genre - Narrating Life Through Culturally Conventionalized Plots”. Narrative 2021 Conference, Ohio State University, Online-Konferenz. 27.05.2021

03/2021: “Cultural Models and Narrative Identity: The Case of Military, Autobiographical Writing“. Invited Guest Speaker at the Aston Literary Linguistics Research Seminar Series, Aston University, Birmingham (United Kingdom, held online). 03.03.2021

03/2020: "Autobiographical Storytelling: Constructing Relatively Stable Narrative Selfhood During Terminal Illness". Narrative 2020 Conference, Mississippi State University, New Orleans (USA). 06.03.2020

10/2019: "Mission Narratives: Creating Purpose-Driven Narrative Identity through Autobiographical Storytelling after War-Experience". Narratives of Displacement Conference, St. Anne's College, University of Oxford (United Kingdom). Organizer: London Centre for Interdisciplinary Research, 26. October 2019

07/2019: Potentially Stable Narrative Self - Creating a Model for Literary Analyses, Summerschool in Narrative Studies (SINS), Aarhus Universitet (Denmark). 27.07.-03.08.2019

04/2019: Narrative Identity (Re-)Construction and Trauma Communication, English Colloquium, RWTH Aachen University (Germany).

04/2018: Post-Conflict Narratives: An Experimental Outlook on Interdisciplinary Research, English Colloquium, RWTH Aachen (Germany).


Projects and Scientific Positions of Administration

since 09/2020: Foundation and management of the event series "Pandemic Storytelling - Finding New Narratives" together with Jessica Jumpertz, M.A.

03/2020 - 04/2021: Management and co-ordination of the online young researchers' conference Narratives of Body and Mind

05-10/2020: Co-Coordination of the workshop "The Study of Literature, Reading and Cognition: Interdisciplinary Approaches, Concepts, and Terms"

05/2019 - 01/2020: Co-Coordination of the lecture series "Empirical Approaches to Literature - Chances and Challenges"


Academic Education:

  • 04/2019-09/2022
    Ph.D. student at the Chair of English Literature, Department of English and American Studies, RWTH Aachen University, Germany
  • 10/2013 – 04/2016
    Master's degree in English Studies, Linguistics and Communication Science, RWTH Aachen University, German
  • 08/2012
    Chinese Language and Culture, Summer School, Shanghai University, Chin
  • 08/2011 – 02/2012
    International Cultural Studies, Aalborg University, Denmar
  • 10/2008 – 09/2012
    Bachelor's degree in Applied Literature and Cultural Studies, Applied Linguistics, Psychology, TU Dortmund University, Germany



08/2012: NRW-China Excellence Initiative
08/2011 - 02/2012: ERASMUS scholarship abroad


Member of the German Cognitive Linguistics Association (DKGL)

Member of the International Society for the Study of Narrative

Member of the International Association of Literary Semantics