Ana Werkmann Horvat

Ana Werkmann Horvat

Ana Werkmann Horvat

Strand 1. Metaphor
Post-doctoral Researcher

I grew up in Osijek, Croatia, which is a 45-minute drive from three different country borders. Osijek is an interesting place its inhabitants’ language very much mirrors centuries of migrations, empires falling apart and countries being born. Even though I grew up in a Croatian-speaking family, the vocabulary that was used daily often had many German, Hungarian, Serbian and Turkish words. This also extended to the food we ate Turkish coffee, Bosnian ćevapi and burek, and Hungarian fish soup are certainly some of my favourite dishes.

I started learning German when I was seven and continued studying it until the end of high school. The one thing I think I will never forget from my elementary school German classes are the full lyrics of Nena’s 99 Luftballons. One of the good things about Croatian TV is that all English TV series and programmes are subtitled rather than dubbed – so I got quite good at reading subtitles and understanding English rather early in my childhood. In addition to studying English and German, in high school I also did two years of Latin. The Latin curriculum in our school included learning a fairly long list of Latin proverbs of which my favourite was Quot capita, tot sententiae (There are as many opinions as there are heads).

During high school I became interested in language and literature, and decided to study Croatian and English language and literature at the University of Osijek. In 2011, I graduated with a thesis on cross-linguistic differences in metaphorical expressions in Croatian and English, and conducted my following research on metaphor in corpora as well as on language teaching. Around that time, I also experienced how it is to be on the other side of language learning, as I spent two years teaching English as a second language to both children and adults. 

In 2013, I started a master’s degree in Linguistics at the University of Ottawa where I started working on modal structures, specifically focusing on Croatian. I continued my work on modality during my DPhil in Linguistics, which I started at the University of Oxford in October 2014 and finished in January 2018. My thesis looked at double modal structures and their semantic restrictions. I have also done experimental work on the acquisition of pronouns. During my studies, I got to be on both sides of the language-learning process one more time. As a teacher, I taught tutorials in Croatian as a second language, which was something I have never done before, while as a learner, I started learning a new language Spanish!

I joined the Creative Multilingualism project in January 2018 as a postdoctoral researcher for the metaphor strand. I will be using experimental methods to explore the question of universality and variability in metaphor use as well as the creative potential of metaphor in relation to processing novel and conventional expressions.

Ana Werkmann Horvat's biography in Croatian

Odrasla sam u Hrvatskoj u gradu Osijeku, na 45 minuta vožnje od tri različite granice. Osijek je zanimljivo mjesto – jezik njegovih stanovnika odražava stoljeća migracije, raspadanja carstava i rađanja država. Iako sam odrasla u obitelji koja govori hrvatski, vokabular koji je korišten često je sadržavao njemačke, mađarske, srpske i turske riječi. To se odrazilo i na jela koja smo jeli – turska kava, bosanski ćevapi i burek te mađarski fiš neka su od mojih najdražih jela.

Njemački sam počela učiti kada sam bila sedam godina i nastavila do kraja srednje škole. Jedna od stvari koje nikad neću zaboraviti s mojih osnovnoškolskih sati njemačkog su riječi Nenine pjesme 99 Luftballons. Jedna od dobrih stvari kod hrvatske televizije je to što su sve engleske serije i programi titlovani, a ne sinkronizirani, zbog čega sam vrlo rano u svom djetinjstvu naučila čitati titlove i razumjela engleski. Uz njemački i engleski, u srednjoj sam školi dvije godine učila i latinski. Program latinskog u mojoj je školi podrazumijevao i učenje poprilično duge liste izreka, od kojih je moja najdraža Quot capita, tot sententiae (Koliko ljudi, toliko ćudi.)

Tijekom srednje škole počeli su me zanimati jezik i književnost te sam odlučila da ću studirati hrvatski i engleski jezik i književnost na Sveučilištu u Osijeku. Godine 2011. diplomirala sam  s diplomskim radom na temu lingvističkih raznolikosti u metaforičkim izrazima u hrvatskom i engleskom, nakon čega sam se bavila istraživanjem metafore u korpusu i u poučavanju jezika. U isto sam vrijeme imala priliku biti na drugoj strani učenja jezika, provevši dvije godine poučavajući engleski kao strani jezik.

Godine 2013. godine započela sam magisterij iz lingvistike na Sveučilištu u Ottawi gdje sam počela raditi na modalnim izrazima, fokusirajući se na hrvatski jezik. Svoj sam rad na modalnosti nastavila tijekom doktorskog studija iz lingvistike koji sam započela na Sveučilištu u Oxfordu 2014. godine te završila u siječnju 2018. Moj se doktorski rad bavio slojevitim modalnim strukturama i njihovim semantičkim ograničenjima. Uz to sam se bavila i eksperimentalnim radom proučavajući usvajanje zamjenica. Tijekom studija imala sam priliku biti na obje strane učenja jezika. Kao nastavnica, držala sam nastavu hrvatskog kao stranog jezika, što je bilo nešto što nisam nikada prije radila, a kao učenica, počela sam učiti novi jezik - španjolski!

Projektu Kreativna višejezičnost pridružila sam se u siječnju 2018. kao poslijedoktorandica na grani projekta Metafora. Tijekom projekta koristit ću eksperimentalne metode kako bih istražila pitanje univerzalnosti i varijabilnosti u korištenju metafora kao i pitanje kreativnog potencijala metafora u procesiranju novih i ustaljenih izraza.