Valerie Heffernan’s research interests encompass 20th and 21st century literature, feminist literary theory and cultural studies. She has published widely on contemporary German literature, with a particular focus on women writers and German-speaking Swiss writers. Her current research considers the representation of mothers, mothering and motherhood in contemporary European literature and culture. Presently, she is Principal Investigator of a research project entitled “The Cultural Transmission of Motherhood in Europe: A Case Study”, for which she was awarded a prestigious Irish Research Council Research Project Grant in 2014. The recipient of numerous other grants, Heffernan is currently working on her second monograph, “Contemporary Women’s Writing in German: The Feminist Family Romance”, which looks as recent German-language novels by women that explore the connection between family stories and the broader historical narrative.