Anna Menyhért is a writer, researcher, university lecturer, and a teacher of creative writing. Her research fields are trauma studies, women’s writing, literary studies, cultural studies and memory studies. She has published poetry, fiction, and books for children.
She studied in Budapest, Moscow, London, North Carolina and Amsterdam, received her PhD (2002) and gave her habilitation lectures (2011) in literary trauma studies at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest.
Currently she works at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest as a researcher, as the Principal Investigator of the Trauma and Gender in Literature and Culture Research Group, working with her team on a webpage of early 20th century women writers similar to social media pages (Women Writers on the Net: ironok.elte.hu), supported by the Hungarian Scientific Research Fund.
She founded and was the director of the Hungarian Literary Authors’ Collecting Society (2007–2014), was the vice president of the European Writers’ Council (2004–2011), as well as the president of the Attila József Circle Literary Union of Young Writers (2000–2006). She used to work as the head of the Department of Hungarian Studies at the Balassi Bálint Institute (2002–2005), and as an assistant professor of literary studies at Miskolc University.
She is the owner and director of 5K Központ, a private creative writing school in Budapest that offers courses for both children and adults. 5K Központ is the partner of the Nottingham Writers’ Studio and the GEDOK of Karlsruhe, Germany in their joint EU funded Grundtvig mobility project on creative writing called Dovetail.
Her academic essays were published in Russian, German and English. Her poems and tales have been translated into English, Italian, and Romanian and were published in magazines, for example the Staple in Nottingham, Formafluens in Rome. She regularly holds lectures on women’s literary tradition as well as on trauma studies and literature both in Hungary and abroad (Italy, Austria, Slovakia, the UK), takes part in readings, conferences, and creative writing workshops. Regularly visits international seminars and conferences on authors’ rights and public lending right issues.
Has received grants and literary prizes (for example the Writing Grant of the National Cultural Foundation, 2013, 2011, 2001, the Litera Award at the Aranyvackor Children’s Tale Competition, 2011, the Bolyai János Research Fellowship of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, 2006–2008, the Pro Literaria Award of the Hungarian Creators’ Union, 2002, the Soros Foundation Grant, 2000, the Móricz Zsigmond Writing Grant, 1999, and the First Prize in Literary Studies at the National Competition for Secondary School Students, 1987).
She published two collections of essays, two monographs, a volume of poetry, short stories and columns, and six books for children. Her monograph Speaking the Unspeakable: Trauma and Literature (2008) was appreciated highly as the initiator of a new discourse for literary studies in Hungary, introducing trauma theories into literary research, and venturing upon expanding the boundaries of classical canons.
Her most recent volumes are the unique Women’s Literary Tradition on the life and work of five Hungarian women writers that combines the methods and point of view of literary research with that of a fiction writer who positions herself at the end of the female literary tradition she thus has created retrospectively (2013); and a book for children titled The Story of My Guinea Pig, a story of a boy who has to part with his pet because his father is allergic to it, written with humour and compassion (2014).
Currently she is working on the fictional biography of Renée Erdős, a Hungarian women writer of the first half of the 20th century, successful and well known at a time, forgotten until recently.
Anna Menyhért was born in 1969, and lives in Budapest with her husband and their son (12) and daughter (2).