Academic journal article ETC.: A Review of General Semantics

Metaphors "Everywhere"?

Academic journal article ETC.: A Review of General Semantics

Metaphors "Everywhere"?

Article excerpt

SOME WRITERS CLAIM that all language is metaphoric. It is built on metaphors, it revolves around metaphors: metaphors are "everywhere." Of course, Korzybski warned against such "all-or-nothing" thinking. And some linguists claim that language relies on metonymy as well as metaphor. Still, I decided to reach into the bookshelves in my office, pick out three random sentences from three random books, and see what I could find related to metaphors. Would I discover metaphors or metaphoric connections in three random sentences?

The first book was Cybersociety 2.0, edited by Steven Jones. On page 110, my finger came to rest upon this sentence:

  "Suzette Haden Elgin is writing an SF novel in which the status of
  sight and touch in the United States are reversed so that most valued
  information comes through touch."

This sentence is about a novel in progress in which the main premise rests solidly on metaphor. The premise reverses what happens in everyday reality, where most of our important information actually depends upon sight, not touch: television and photographs constantly pour out images which are, in fact, metaphorical; they represent the "actuality" which we are being shown. In the novel, however, somehow the sense of touch replaces the sense of sight. But we can be sure that the "touches" will be metaphorical if a medium is being used to send these "touches" to us. So, the first sentence has strong metaphoric connections.

The second book was Tuning the Mind, a historical study of 18th Century theorists of musical aesthetics. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.