Monday, September 21, 2020

RAW Semantics on metaphor in language

RAW Semantics takes on what Robert Anton Wilson wrote about metaphors, and how metaphors are used in language. Excerpt:

When RAW writes that the principle software of the human brain consists of metaphors and disguised metaphors, he appears to be referring primarily to what linguists mean by conceptual metaphor.

Examples of poetic/’figurative’ metaphor

“Juliet is the sun” (popular metaphor relating to romantic love, from Shakespeare)

“The Scum” (popular metaphorical label for The Sun newspaper, from Liverpool)

Examples of conceptual metaphor

Right where you are sitting now, if you’re concerned that you might be wasting your time, then imagine the reality tunnel of a culture with no notion of time as a commodity that can be wasted or not wasted. (Such cultures have existed. The conceptual metaphor of time as a resource or commodity-like thing that can be squandered, utilized, saved, spent, invested, etc, isn’t universal, but owes a lot to the concept of work as it has developed over the centuries – particularly, but not solely, in modern Western societies.)

More here. 

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