Eva Maria (Emy) Koopman is interested in the intersections between literature and psychology. She holds a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology and a research master’s degree (cum laude) in Literary Studies (both from Utrecht University). During her studies, she explored what literature can do for people who are mourning a loss. She also looked into the ethical issues involved in writing about the pain of others, specifically rape scenes. Together with Gerald Cupchik and Michelle Hilscher (University of Toronto), she conducted an empirical study into readers’ reactions to literary rape scenes.
Currently (2011-2015), Emy is conducting PhD research at Erasmus University Rotterdam into reader reactions to stories about mental pain, with a specific interest in the comparison between literary and non-literary texts, and the outcome variables empathy and reflection. During a research visit to Edmonton, together with Donald Kuiken (University of Alberta), she has investigated meaningful reading experiences.
Emy has published about her research in various international peer-reviewed journals, including Scientific Study of Literature, Poetics, and Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity and the Arts. Apart from academic publications, Emy writes with some regularity for the popular press. She is a contributing editor at hard//hoofd (online magazine for art and journalism) and has written for journalistic platforms like De Groene Amsterdammer and De Correspondent.
Author versions of Emy’s academic publications can be found on academia.edu.