The deluge of metaphors triggered in 1981 in France by the first public reports of what would turn out to be the AIDS epidemic spread with far greater speed and efficiency than the virus itself. To understand why it took France so long to react to the AIDS crisis, AIDS in French Culture analyzes the intersections of three discourses—the literary, the medical, and the political—and traces the origin of French attitudes about AIDS back to nineteenth-century anxieties about nationhood, masculinity, and sexuality.
Blier illuminates the extraordinary architecture of the Batammaliba people of Western Africa, revealing these buildings as texts through which we can read the beliefs, psychology, traditions, and social concerns of their inhabitants. In doing so, she explores the role of vernacular architecture as an expression of culture.
"A splendid analysis of the centrality of architecture in the daily lives of the Batammaliba and its integral role in articulating social values....The story is beautifully told in the best of anthropological traditions."—Judith R. Blau, Contemporary Society
"A remarkable study....Blier's volume carries the study of African architecture to a qualitatively new level of scholarship. It introduces a new dimension whereby the architectural medium can be used to illuminate much of the entire belief system of any culture."—Labelle Prussin, African Arts
"In this excellent book Blier provides a richly detailed and searching account of what architecture means to the Batammaliba of northern Togo and Benin....The finest account I have yet read of the relations between systems of beliefs, ritual practices, and African aesthetics and plastic arts....The ethnography and basic insight should be the envy of any social anthropologist."—T.O. Beidelman, Man
This book captures the complexity and humanity of one of the most agonizing of contemporary problems—that of terrorist violence. Basque Violence is in fact a pioneering attempt to give a fully contextualized, cultural account of the endemic conflict engaging Basque villagers both as protagonists and as spectators. The author focuses on his native village of Itziar in the province of Guipúzcoa, and many of the Basque activists he discusses are friends from his youth. They are now lionized by the villagers despite the fact that their actions have become increasingly problematic for the villagers themselves. Far from being the work of a “terrorism expert” seeking counter-insurgency solutions or concentrating on the usual search for the causes and consequences of violence, this study attempts instead to understand the conscious and unconscious presuppositions of the violence. The author becomes the narrator of a drama of Homeric proportions in which ordinary men are forced into acts of heroism and errors of tragic consequence.
Zita Nunes argues that the prevailing narratives of identity formation throughout the Americas share a dependence on metaphors of incorporation and, often, of cannibalism. From the position of the incorporating body, the construction of a national and racial identity through a process of assimilation presupposes a remainder, a residue.
Nunes addresses works by writers and artists who explore what is left behind in the formation of national identities and speak to the limits of the contemporary discourse of democracy. Cannibal Democracy tracks its central metaphor’s circulation through the work of writers such as Mário de Andrade, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Toni Morrison and journalists of the black press, as well as work by visual artists including Magdalena Campos-Pons and Keith Piper, and reveals how exclusion-understood in terms of what is left out-can be fruitfully understood in terms of what is left over from a process of unification or incorporation.
Nunes shows that while this remainder can be deferred into the future-lurking as a threat to the desired stability of the present-the residue haunts discourses of national unity, undermining the ideologies of democracy that claim to resolve issues of race.
Zita Nunes is associate professor of English at the University of Maryland, College Park.
In recent years, New Historicists have situated the iconoclasm of Milton’s poetry and prose within the context of political, cultural, and philosophical discourses that foreshadow early modernism. In Carnal Rhetoric, Lana Cable carries these investigations further by exploring the iconoclastic impulse in Milton’s works through detailed analyses of his use of metaphor. Building on a provocative iconoclastic theory of metaphor, she breaks new ground in the area of affective stylistics, not only as it pertains to the writings of Milton but also to all expressive language. Cable traces the development of Milton’s iconoclastic poetics from its roots in the antiprelatical tracts, through the divorce tracts and Areopagitica, to its fullest dramatic representation in Eikonoklastes and Samson Agonistes. Arguing that, like every creative act, metaphor is by nature a radical and self-transgressing agent of change, she explores the site where metaphoric language and imaginative desire merge. Examining the demands Milton places on metaphor, particularly his emphasis on language as a vehicle for mortal redemption, Cable demonstrates the ways in which metaphor acts for him as that creative and radical agent of change. In the process, she reveals Milton’s engagement, at the deepest levels of linguistic creativity, with the early modern commitment to an imaginative and historic remaking of the world. An insightful and synthetic book, Carnal Rhetoric will appeal to scholars of English literature, Milton, and the Renaissance, as well as to those with an interest in the theory of affective stylistics as it pertains to reader-response criticism, semantics, epistemology, and the philosophy and psychology of language.
Cold War Rhetoric is the first book in over twenty years to bring a sustained rhetorical critique to bear on central texts of the Cold War. The rhetorical texts that are the subject of this book include speeches by Presidents Eisenhower and Kennedy, the Murrow- McCarthy confrontation on CBS, the speeches and writings of peace advocates, and the recurring theme of unAmericanism as it has been expressed in various media throughout the Cold War years. Each of the authors brings to his texts a particular approach to rhetorical criticism—strategic, metaphorical, or ideological. Each provides an introductory chapter on methodology that explains the assumptions and strengths of their particular approach.
This collection of papers is the outcome of the first Conceptual Structure, Discourse and Language conference (CSDL) held at the University of Califronia, San Diego in October 1995. CSDL was organized with the intention of bringing together researchers from both "cognitive" and "functional" approaches to linguistics. The papers in this volume span a variety of topics, but there is a common thread running through them: the claim that semantics and discourse properties are fundamental to our understanding of language.
This stimulating compilation of essays and images reveals an essential and valuable component of Czech contributions to the world of modern theatre heretofore largely unseen outside the country itself. Featuring the craft of twenty-seven of the best stage and costume designers of the twentieth century, Joe Brandesky supplies ample evidence of their consistently high quality and dynamic creativity, survival skills for a people whose national identity had been dismantled during many years of occupation and repression.
Essays by Vera Ptacková, Dennis Christilles, Delbert Unruh, and, Marie Zdenková their full texts restored and reedited for this volume since their initial publication in exhibit catalogs, provide historical and linguistic insights into contemporary Czech scenography as well as comparisons to the major art movements affecting the designers. Brandesky’s informative introductory essay contextualizes the shifting tenets of Czech theatre design. Also included are biographies of the designers, a bibliography, and thirty black-and-white photographs.
The accompanying CD provides access to the vibrant and sophisticated images of the Czech theatrical world: 138 richly colorful paintings and drawings of costumes, models, and set designs and in situ photos of exhibited designs plus 27 color and black-and-white photos of the designers. The CD also includes the full text of the book with links to all the art and to the designers’ biographies. Book and CD together showcase the Czech Republic as a center of international stage design.
Devised in the 1940s by the biologist C. H. Waddington, the epigenetic landscape is a metaphor for how gene regulation modulates cellular development. As a scientific model, it fell out of use in the late 1960s but returned at the beginning of the twenty-first century with the advent of big-data genomic research because of its utility among scientists across the life sciences to think more creatively about and to discuss genetics. In Epigenetic Landscapes Susan Merrill Squier follows the model’s cultural trail, from its first visualization by the artist John Piper to its use beyond science. Squier examines three cases in which the metaphor has been imaginatively deployed to illustrate complex systems that link scientific and cultural practices: graphic medicine, landscape architecture, and bioArt. Challenging reductive understandings of epigenetics, Squier boldly reclaims the broader significance of the epigenetic landscape as a figure at the nexus of art, design, and science.
The term mantle has inspired philosophers, geographers, and theologians and shaped artists’ and mapmakers’ visual vocabularies for thousands of years. According to Veronica della Dora, mantle is the “metaphor par excellence, for it unfolds between the seen and the unseen as a threshold and as a point of tension.” Featuring numerous illustrations, The Mantle of the Earth: Genealogies of a Geographical Metaphor is an intellectual history of the term mantle and its metaphorical representation in art and literature, geography and cartography. Through the history of this metaphor from antiquity to the modern day, we learn about shifting perceptions and representations of global space, about our planetary condition, and about the nature of geography itself.
Mark Twain and Metaphor
John Bird University of Missouri Press, 2007 Library of Congress PS1341.B57 2007 | Dewey Decimal 818.409
Metaphor theory, observes John Bird, is like Mark Twain: both seem simple upon first introduction. Now, in the most complete study to date of Twain’s use of figurative language, a veteran Twain scholar tackles the core of his writing and explores it with theoretical approaches that have rarely been applied to Twain, providing new insights into how he imagined his world—and the singular ways in which he expressed himself.
From “The Jumping Frog” to the late dream narratives, Bird considers Twain’s metaphoric construction over his complete career and especially sheds new light on his central texts: Roughing It; The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; Adventures of Huckleberry Finn; A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court; Pudd’nhead Wilson; and No. 44,The Mysterious Stranger. He reconsiders “Old Times on the Mississippi” as the most purely metaphorical of Twain’s writings, goes on to look at how Twain used metaphor and talked about it in a variety of works and genres, and even argues that Clemens’s pseudonym is not so much an alter ego as a metaphorized self.
By offering insight into how Twain handled figurative language during the composing process, Bird reveals not only hidden facets of his artistry but also new aspects of works that we think we know well—including some entirely new ideas regarding Huck Finn that draw on the recent discovery of the first half of the manuscript. In addition to dealing with issues currently central to Twain studies, such as race and gender, he also links metaphor to humor and dream theory to further illuminate topics central to his work.
More than a study of Twain’s language, the book delves into the psychological aspects of metaphor to reveal the writer’s attitudes and thoughts, showing how using metaphor as a guide to Twain reveals much about his composition process. Applying the insights of metaphor theorists such as Roman Jakobson and Colin M. Turbayne, Bird offers readers not only new insights into Twain but also an introduction to this interdisciplinary field.
In lively prose, Mark Twain and Metaphor provides a vital way to read Twain’s entire corpus, allowing readers to better appreciate his style, humor, and obsession with dreams. It opens new ground and makes old ground fresh again, offering ways to see and resee this essential American writer.
Denis Donoghue Harvard University Press, 2014 Library of Congress P301.5.M48D66 2014 | Dewey Decimal 808.032
Metaphor supposes that an ordinary word could have been used, but instead something unexpected appears. The point of a metaphor is to enrich experience by bringing different associations to mind, by giving something a different life. The prophetic character of metaphor, Denis Donoghue says, changes the world by changing our sense of it.
"The scholarship of Michael Spitzer's new book is impressive and thorough. The writing is impeccable and the coverage extensive. The book treats the history of the use of metaphor in the field of classical music. It also covers a substantial part of the philosophical literature. The book treats the topic of metaphor in a new and extremely convincing manner."-Lydia Goehr, Columbia University
The experience of music is an abstract and elusive one, enough so that we're often forced to describe it using analogies to other forms and sensations: we say that music moves or rises like a physical form; that it contains the imagery of paintings or the grammar of language. In these and countless other ways, our discussions of music take the form of metaphor, attempting to describe music's abstractions by referencing more concrete and familiar experiences.
Michael Spitzer's Metaphor and Musical Thought uses this process to create a unique and insightful history of our relationship with music—the first ever book-length study of musical metaphor in any language. Treating issues of language, aesthetics, semiotics, and cognition, Spitzer offers an evaluation, a comprehensive history, and an original theory of the ways our cultural values have informed the metaphors we use to address music. And as he brings these discussions to bear on specific works of music and follows them through current debates on how music's meaning might be considered, what emerges is a clear and engaging guide to both the philosophy of musical thought and the history of musical analysis, from the seventeenth century to the present day. Spitzer writes engagingly for students of philosophy and aesthetics, as well as for music theorists and historians.
Metaphor and the Slave Trade provides compelling evidence of the hidden but unmistakable traces of the transatlantic slave trade that persist in West African discourse. Through an examination of metaphors that describe the trauma, loss, and suffering associated with the commerce in human lives, this book shows how the horrors of slavery are communicated from generation to generation.
Laura T. Murphy’s insightful new readings of canonical West African fiction, autobiography, drama, and poetry explore the relationship between memory and metaphor and emphasize how repressed or otherwise marginalized memories can be transmitted through images, tropes, rumors, and fears. By analyzing the unique codes through which West Africans have represented the slave trade, this work foregrounds African literary contributions to Black Atlantic discourse and draws attention to the archive that metaphor unlocks for scholars of all disciplines and fields of study.
Only recently have linguists ceased to regard metaphors as mere frills on the periphery of language and begun to recognize them as cornerstones of discourse. Phyllis Wilcox takes this innovation one step further in her fascinating study of metaphors in American Sign Language.
Such an inquiry has long been obscured by, as Wilcox calls it, "the shroud of iconicity." ASL's iconic nature once discouraged people from recognizing it as a language; more recently it has served to confuse linguists examining its metaphors. Wilcox, however, presents methods for distinguishing between icon and metaphor, allowing the former to clarify, not cloud, the latter. "If the iconic influence that surrounds metaphor is set aside, the results will be greater understanding, and interpretations that are less opaque."
Wilcox concludes her study with a close analysis of the ASL poem, "The Dogs," by Ella Mae Lentz. In presenting Deaf Americans', Deaf Germans', and Deaf Italians' reactions to the poem, Wilcox manages not only to demonstrate the influence of culture upon metaphors, but also to illuminate the sources of sociopolitical division within the American Deaf community. Metaphor in American Sign Language proves an engrossing read for those interested in linguistics and Deaf culture alike.
Phyllis Perrin Wilcox is Assistant Professor of Linguistics and Coordinator of the Signed Language Interpreting Program at the University of New Mexico, in Albuquerque, NM.
Engage compelling arguments that challenge prominent positions in Pauline studies
In this innovative book, William E. W. Robinson takes the reader on a journey through Romans 8:1–17 using Conceptual Metaphor Theory and Conceptual Integration Theory. Robinson delineates the underlying cognitive metaphors, their structure, their function, what they mean, and how Paul’s audiences then and now are able to comprehend their meaning. He examines each metaphor in the light of relevant aspects of the Greco-Roman world and Paul’s Jewish background. Robinson contends that Paul portrays the Spirit as the principal agent in the religious-ethical life of believers. At the same time, his analysis demonstrates that the conceptual metaphors in Romans 8:1–17 convey the integral role of believers in ethical conduct. In the process, he addresses thorny theological issues such as whether Spirit and flesh signal an internal battle within believers or two conflicting ways of life. Finally, Robinson shows how this study is relevant to related Pauline passages and challenges scholars to incorporate these methods into their own investigation of biblical texts.
Sustained argument that sheds new light on how Paul communicates with his audiences
Substantial contribution to current debates about central theological concepts
Conceptual Metaphor Theory and Conceptual Integration Theory applied to the metaphors in Romans 8:1-17
Metaphorical World Politics
Francis A. Beer Michigan State University Press, 2004 Library of Congress JA85.M45 2004 | Dewey Decimal 320.014
Metaphorical World Politics argues that language and metaphor are important parts of international political reality. Metaphors and world politics have appeared together many times in recent history. The blended space that results is metaphorical world politics, a real- world game for political and scientific actors. This collection picks up the challenge to unravel the game, to examine its rules, to clarify the mixture of images and facts that is so real in politics but so exceptional in science. Scholars have studied metaphor mostly from a linguistic or a literary point of view. This work forces those primarily interested in metaphors to think about applications and implications beyond the text. Others concerned mainly with world politics may consider how metaphors may help to energize and structure international political thought and action.
Scholars have most often studied world politics embedded in so-called "facts." Metaphorical World Politics shows that facts are misleading in their compactness, that facts are often meaningless, that metaphors in contrast are energetic processors of meaning, and that facts in world politics are nothing more than weak emulsions of metaphor. This work outlines the general place of metaphor on the map of politics and highlights the location of specific metaphors on the political terrain.
Traditional thinking on metaphors has divided them into two camps: dead and alive. Conventional expressions from everyday language are classified as dead, while much rarer novel or poetic metaphors are alive. In the 1980s, new theories on the cognitive processes involved with the use of metaphor challenged these assumptions, but with little empirical support. Drawing on the latest research in linguistics, semiotics, philosophy, and psychology, Cornelia Müller here unveils a new approach that refutes the rigid dead/alive dichotomy, offering in its place a more dynamic model: sleeping and waking.
To build this model, Müller presents an overview of notions of metaphor from the classical period to the present; studies in detail how metaphors function in speech, text, gesture, and images; and examines the way mixed metaphors sometimes make sense and sometimes do not. This analysis leads her to conclude that metaphors may oscillate between various degrees of sleeping and waking as their status changes depending on context and intention. Bridging the gap between conceptual metaphor theory and more traditional linguistic theories, this book is a major advance for the field and will be vital to novices and initiates alike.
Metaphors We Live By
George Lakoff and Mark Johnson University of Chicago Press, 2003 Library of Congress P106.L235 2003 | Dewey Decimal 401
The now-classic Metaphors We Live By changed our understanding of metaphor and its role in language and the mind. Metaphor, the authors explain, is a fundamental mechanism of mind, one that allows us to use what we know about our physical and social experience to provide understanding of countless other subjects. Because such metaphors structure our most basic understandings of our experience, they are "metaphors we live by"—metaphors that can shape our perceptions and actions without our ever noticing them.
In this updated edition of Lakoff and Johnson's influential book, the authors supply an afterword surveying how their theory of metaphor has developed within the cognitive sciences to become central to the contemporary understanding of how we think and how we express our thoughts in language.
Both sides in controversies tend to argue they have logic on their side. This book proposes that the interminable nature of these controversies suggests there is a problem with the main tool of logic, the syllogism. Drawing on contemporary developments in social theory and philosophy, Stanley Raffel argues that metaphors are not just aesthetic tools; they can also be used to judge phenomena. Featuring case studies drawn from both literary material and current controversial debates, The Method of Metaphor ultimately demonstrates the value of this neglected potential of metaphoric reasoning and shows its far-reaching implications in both moral behavior and moral education.
This volume features two dimensions of Michael Osborn’s work with rhetorical metaphor. The first focuses on his early efforts to develop a conception of metaphor to advance the understanding of rhetoric, while the second concerns more recent efforts to apply this enriched conception in the analysis and criticism of significant rhetorical practice. The older emphasis features four of Osborn’s more prominent published essays, revealing the personal context in which they were generated, their strengths and shortcomings, and how they may have inspired the work of others. His more recent unpublished work analyzes patterns of metaphor in the major speeches of Demosthenes, the evolution of metaphors of illness and cure in speeches across several millennia, the exploitation of the birth-death-rebirth metaphor in Riefenstahl’s masterpiece of Nazi propaganda Triumph of the Will, and the contrasting forms of spatial imagery in the speeches of Edmund Burke and Barack Obama and what these contrasts may portend.
Moorings and Metaphors is one of the first studies to examine the ways that cultural tradition is reflected in the language and figures of black women's writing. In a discussion that includes the works of Gloria Naylor, Alice Walker, Ama Ata Aidoo, Ntozake Shange, Buchi Emecheta, Octavia Butler, Efua Sutherland, and Gayl Jones, and with a particular focus on Toni Morrison's Beloved and Flora Nwapa's Efuru, Holloway follows the narrative structures, language, and figurative metaphors of West African goddesses and African-American ancestors as they weave through the pages of these writers' fiction. She explores what she would call the cultural and gendered essence of contemporary literature that has grown out of the African diaspora.
Proceeding from a consideration of the imaginative textual languages of contemporary African-American and West African writers, Holloway asserts the intertextuality of black women's literature across two continents. She argues the subtext of culture as the source of metaphor and language, analyzes narrative structures and linguistic processes, and develops a combined theoretical/critical apparatus and vocabulary for interpreting these writers' works. The cultural sources and spiritual considerations that inhere in these textual languages are discussed within the framework Holloway employs of patterns of revision, (re)membrance, and recursion--all of which are vehicles for expressive modes inscribed at the narrative level. Her critical reading of contemporary black women's writing in the United States and West Africa is unique, radical, and sure to be controversial.
"The authors restore metaphor to our lives by showing us that it's never gone away. We've merely been taught to talk as if it had: as though weather maps were more 'real' than the breath of autumn; as though, for that matter, Reason was really 'cool.' What we're saying whenever we say is a theme this book illumines for anyone attentive." — Hugh Kenner, Johns Hopkins University
"In this bold and powerful book, Lakoff and Turner continue their use of metaphor to show how our minds get hold of the world. They have achieved nothing less than a postmodern Understanding Poetry, a new way of reading and teaching that makes poetry again important." — Norman Holland, University of Florida
"A major academic work that is also brilliantly, clearly, humanely,
and poetically written. It can be enjoyed not only by ballad and bawdry
scholars but by everyone who picks it up." -- Kenneth S. Goldstein,
University of Pennsylvania, former president of the American Folklore
"Toelken's insights . . . are unique. His study broadens and deepens
scholarly appreciation of how folksong metaphors carry their own semantic
weight. . . . One of the best expressions of the power of music in folksong
that I have seen in recent years." -- James Porter, author of The Traditional Music of Britain and Ireland
In this lively exploration of folksongs and their meanings, Barre Toelken
looks closely at riddle songs and other ambiguous folksongs, as well as
the various "ballad commonplaces." Ranging through metaphors
such as weaving, plowing, plucking flowers, and walking in the dew, Toelken
shows how each contributes to meaning in vernacular song. He includes
comparisons to German folksongs, medieval poetry, Italian folk lyrics,
and a wide range of Euro-American vernacular expression.
Despite urgent calls for reform, composition, literature, and creative writing, remain territorial, competitive fields. This book imagines ways in which the three English camps can reconnect. Seitz contends that the study of metaphor can advance curriculum reform precisely because of its unusual institutional position. By pronouncing equivalence in the very face of difference, metaphor performs an irrational discursive act that takes us to the nexus of textual, social, and ideological questions that have stirred such contentious debate in recent years over the function of English studies itself. As perhaps the most radical (yet also quotidian) means by which language negotiates difference, metaphor can help us to think about the politics of identification and the curricular movements such a politics has inspired.
Music as Metaphor was first published in 1960. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
A professor of music for many years, Mr. Ferguson here sets forth his theories on how music conveys meaning to its listeners. He identifies and discusses the elements of musical expression - tonal stress and rhythm - and correlates them with the nervous tensions and motor impulses which characterize human emotion. Through this correlation, he shows how music portrays universally understood emotional states and ideas. He relates these principles to music criticism, proposing a new system for such criticism.
Edited by Sheldon Sacks University of Chicago Press, 1979 Library of Congress PN228.M4O5 | Dewey Decimal 808
On Metaphor, a collection of fourteen essays by eminent philosophers, literary critics, theologians, art historians, and psychologists, illustrates and explores a striking phenomenon in modern intellectual history: the transformation of metaphor from a specialized concern of rhetoricians and literary critics to a central concept in the study of human understanding. These lively and provocative essays probe the nature, function, and meaning of metaphor and collectively demonstrate the multidisciplinary implications of the concept.
Because of its comprehensive scope, the volume is useful both as a resource for those interested in contemporary philosophy and theories of language and as a text for courses in such areas as the philosophy of language, critical theory, and the philosophy of knowledge. Originally published as a special issue of Critical Inquiry, the present collection includes two new contributions by Max Black and Nelson Goodman, along with a comprehensive index to the work.
Explore the significance of maternal metaphors in the writings of a first-century male missionary and theologian
Paul employed metaphors of childbirth or breastfeeding in four out of the seven undisputed epistles. In this book, McNeel uses cognitive metaphor theory and social identity analysis to examine the meaning and function of these maternal metaphors. She asserts that metaphors carry cognitive content and that they are central to how humans process information, construct reality, and shape group identity.
A focus on “identity” as the way in which people understand themselves in relation to one another, to society, and to those perceived as outsiders
Examination of metaphor as part of Paul’s rhetorical strategy
Integration of the work of philosopher Max Black with the work of cognitive linguists George Lakoff and Mark Johnson
Philosophical Perspectives on Metaphor was first published in 1981. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
"We are," says Mark Johnson, "in the midst of metaphormania." The past few years have seen an explosion of interest in metaphor as a vehicle for exploring the relations between language and thought. While a number of recent books have dealt with metaphor from the standpoints of several disciplines, there is no collection that shows the best of the work that has been done in the field of philosophy. Mark Johnson has brought together essays that define the central issues of the discussion in this field.
His introductory essay offers a critical survey of historically influential treatments of figurative language (including those of Aristotle, Hobbes, Locke, Kant, and Nietzsche) and sets forth the nature of various issues that have been of interest to philosophers. Thus, it provides a context in which to understand the motivations, influences, and significance of the collected essays. An annotated bibliography serves as a catalog of all relevant literature.
Philosophical Perspectives on Metaphor provides an entry point into the philosophical exploration of metaphor for students, philosophers, linguists, psychologists, artists, critics, or anyone interested in language and its relation to understanding and experience.
Plotinus, the Roman philosopher (c. 204-270 CE) who is widely regarded as the founder of Neoplatonism, was also the creator of numerous myths, images, and metaphors. They have influenced both secular philosophers and Christian and Muslim theologians, but have frequently been dismissed by modern scholars as merely ornamental. In this book, distinguished philosopher Stephen R. L. Clark shows that they form a vital set of spiritual exercises by which individuals can achieve one of Plotinus’s most important goals: self-transformation through contemplation.
Clark examines a variety of Plotinus’s myths and metaphors within the cultural and philosophical context of his time, asking probing questions about their contemplative effects. What is it, for example, to “think away the spatiality” of material things? What state of mind is Plotinus recommending when he speaks of love, or drunkenness, or nakedness? What star-like consciousness is intended when he declares that we were once stars or are stars eternally? What does it mean to say that the soul goes around God? And how are we supposed to “bring the god in us back to the god in all”? Through these rich images and structures, Clark casts Plotinus as a philosopher deeply concerned with philosophy as a way of life.
This book presents careful readings of six of the most important theoretical works of Nicholas of Cusa (1401-1463). Though Nicholas' writings have long been studied as either scholastic Aristotelian or proto-Kantian, Clyde Lee Miller locates Cusanus squarely in the Christian Neoplatonic tradition. He demonstrates how Nicholas worked out his own original synthesis of that tradition by fashioning a conjectural view of main categories of Christian thought: God, the universe, Jesus Christ, and human beings. Each of the readings reveals how Nicholas' project of "learned ignorance" is played out in striking metaphors for God and the relation of God to creation.
Readers often have regarded with curiosity the creative life of the poet. In this passionate and authoritative new study, David Bethea illustrates the relation between the art and life of nineteenth-century poet Alexander Pushkin, the central figure in Russian thought and culture. Bethea shows how Pushkin, on the eve of his two-hundredth birthday, still speaks to our time. He indicates how we as modern readers might "realize"— that is, not only grasp cognitively, but feel, experience—the promethean metaphors central to the poet's intensely "sculpted" life. The Pushkin who emerges from Bethea's portrait is one who, long unknown to English-language readers, closely resembles the original both psychologically and artistically.
Bethea begins by addressing the influential thinkers Freud, Bloom, Jakobson, and Lotman to show that their premises do not, by themselves, adequately account for Pushkin's psychology of creation or his version of the "life of the poet." He then proposes his own versatile model of reading, and goes on to sketches the tangled connections between Pushkin and his great compatriot, the eighteenth-century poet Gavrila Derzhavin. Pushkin simultaneously advanced toward and retreated from the shadow of his predecessor as he created notions of poet-in-history and inspiration new for his time and absolutely determinative for the tradition thereafter.
Explore the embodied foundations of Paul's resurrection ideals
It is commonly recognized that Paul's resurrection ideals are bodily ideals, though this dictum is usually configured along literal and metaphorical lines. The realism of future resurrected bodies is disconnected from the metaphoricity of bodily transformation in the present. Drawing on cognitive linguistics, this fresh and innovative study addresses this problem. By eschewing the opposition of metaphor and realism, Tappenden explores the concepts and metaphors Paul uses to fashion notions of resurrection, and the uses to which those notions are put. Rather than asserting resurrection as a disembodied, cognicentric proposition, this book illuminates the body's central role in shaping and grounding the apostle's thought and writings.
Close examination of Paul's letters within multiple, interlocking cultural contexts
Provides a novel and fresh approach to assessing (in)coherence across the undisputed letters
Addresses the materialist nature of early Christian and Judean resurrection ideals without compromising the metaphoricity of those ideals
People have long imagined themselves as rooted creatures, bound to the earth—and nations—from which they came. In Rootedness, Christy Wampole looks toward philosophy, ecology, literature, history, and politics to demonstrate how the metaphor of the root—surfacing often in an unexpected variety of places, from the family tree to folk etymology to the language of exile—developed in twentieth-century Europe.
Wampole examines both the philosophical implications of this metaphor and its political evolution. From the root as home to the root as genealogical origin to the root as the past itself, rootedness has survived in part through its ability to subsume other compelling metaphors, such as the foundation, the source, and the seed. With a focus on this concept’s history in France and Germany, Wampole traces its influence in diverse areas such as the search for the mystical origins of words, land worship, and nationalist rhetoric, including the disturbing portrayal of the Jews as an unrooted, and thus unrighteous, people. Exploring the works of Martin Heidegger, Simone Weil, Jean-Paul Sartre, Paul Celan, and many more, Rootedness is a groundbreaking study of a figure of speech that has had wide-reaching—and at times dire—political and social consequences.
The certainty that deep down we are all schlemiels is perhaps what makes America love an inept ball team or a Woody Allen who unburdens his neurotic heart in public.
In this unique, revised history of the schlemiel, Sanford Pinsker uses psychological, linguistic, and anecdotal approaches, as well as his considerable skills as a spritely storyteller, to trace the schlemiel from his beginnings in the Old Testament through his appearance in the nineteenth-century literature of Mendele Mocher Seforim and Sholom Aleichem to his final development as the beautiful loser in the works of Isaac Bashevis Singer, Bernard Malamud, Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, and Woody Allen. Horatio Alger might have once been a good emblem of the American sensibility, but today Woody Allen’s anxious, bespectacled punin (face) seems closer, and truer, to our national experience. His urban, end-of-the-century anxieties mirror—albeit in exaggeration—our own.
This expanded study of the schlemiel is especially relevant now, when scholarship of Yiddish and American Jewish literature is on the increase. By sketching the family tree of that durable anti-hero the schlemiel, Pinsker proves that Jewish humor is built upon the very foundations of the Jewish experience. Pinsker shows the evolution of the schlemiel from the comic butt of Yiddish jokes to a literary figure that speaks to the heart of our modern problems, and he demonstrates the way that Yiddish humor provides a sorely needed correction, a way of pulling down the vanities we all live by.
Examine new insights into the conceptual worldview of biblical
The Bible is full of metaphors. On the surface, these metaphors seem like simple literary flourishes that have been added to the text for artistic effect. This book, however, argues that biblical metaphors reflect more basic, prelinguistic cognitive structures. These conceptual metaphors developed out of common concrete experiences and only gradually developed into the complex metaphors that one finds within biblical texts. This book explores how common sensory activities like seeing, hearing, touching, eating, breathing, and walking developed into the abstract metaphors for wisdom that one finds in Proverbs, Job, and Qohelet. Because it traces the cognitive development of a set of related metaphors across several congruent texts, it provides a model by which scholars can trace the cognitive development of biblical metaphors more generally in the Hebrew Bible and other early Jewish and Christian texts.
A synthesis of conceptual metaphor theory that provides a workable theory for examining biblical texts
An analytical framework for studying sensory experience and sensory metaphors in biblical texts
Sometimes the crack of the bat or the roar of the crowd fails to capture the meaning of sports as athletes themselves understand it. Books about sports have ignored this dimension of the subject, particularly the athletes’ own autobiographical accounts. In Sporting Lives, the first book to examine the two popular realms of sports and autobiography, James Pipkin looks at recurring patterns found in athletes’ accounts of their lives and sporting experiences, examining language, metaphor, rhetorical strategies, and other elements to analyze sports from the inside out.
Sporting Lives takes a fresh look at memoirs from baseball, football, basketball, golf, and other sports to explore how American athletes see themselves: not only how those images mesh with popular perceptions of them as heroes or celebrities but also how their accounts differ from those of sports journalists and other outsiders. Drawing on the life stories of such well-known figures as Wilt Chamberlain, Babe Ruth, and Martina Navratilova—both as-told-to and self-authored works—Pipkin follows players from the “echoing green” of eternal youth to the sometimes cultlike and isolated status of fame, interpreting recurring patterns both in the living of their lives and in the telling of them. He even considers Dennis Rodman’s four autobiographies to show how the contradictions of his self-portrayals reflect the Janus-faced quality of sports in the era of celebrity culture.
As Pipkin shows, the life of the athlete involves more than mere athleticism; it is also a world of nostalgia and sentiment, missed opportunities and lost youth. He sheds light on athletes’ common obsession with youth and body image—including gender and racial considerations—and explores their descriptions of being “in a zone,” that transcendent state when everything seems to click. And he considers the time that all athletes dread, when their bodies begin to betray them . . . and the cheering stops.
While the lives of athletes may often suggest the magic of Peter Pan, Pipkin’s engaging study reveals that they are in many ways more like the Lost Boys. Sporting Lives shows that the meaning of sports is intertwined with the telling. It is both an eminently readable book for fans and a critically sophisticated analysis that will engage scholars of literature, sports or media studies, and American popular culture.
In Syphilis: Medicine, Metaphor, and Religious Conflict in Early Modern France, Deborah Losse examines how images of syphilis became central to Renaissance writing and reflected more than just the rapid spread of this new and poorly understood disease. Losse argues that early modern writers also connected syphilis with the wars of religion in sixteenth-century France. These writers, from reform-minded humanists to Protestant poets and Catholic polemicists, entered the debate from all sides by appropriating the disease as a metaphor for weakening French social institutions. Catholics and Protestants alike leveled the charge of paillardise (lechery) at one another. Losse demonstrates how they adopted the language of disease to attack each other’s politics, connecting diseased bodies with diseased doctrine.
Losse provides close readings of a range of genres, moving between polemical poetry, satirical narratives, dialogical colloquies, travel literature, and the personal essay. With chapters featuring Erasmus, Rabelais, Montaigne, Léry, and Agrippa d’Aubigné, this study compares literary descriptions of syphilis with medical descriptions. In the first full-length study of Renaissance writers’ engagement with syphilis, Deborah Losse charts a history from the most vehement rhetoric of the pox to a tenuous resolution of France’s conflicts, when both sides called for a return to order.
The early settlers in America had a special relationship to the theater. Though largely without a theater of their own, they developed an ideology of theater that expressed their sense of history, as well as their version of life in the New World. Theater Enough provides an innovative analysis of early American culture by examining the rhetorical shaping of the experience of settlement in the new land through the metaphor of theater. The rhetoric, or discourse, of early American theater emerged out of the figures of speech that permeated the colonists’ lives and literary productions. Jeffrey H. Richards examines a variety of texts—histories, diaries, letters, journals, poems, sermons, political tracts, trial transcripts, orations, and plays—and looks at the writings of such authors as John Winthrop and Mercy Otis Warren. Richards places the American usage of theatrum mundi—the world depicted as a stage—in the context of classical and Renaissance traditions, but shows how the trope functions in American rhetoric as a register for religious, political, and historical attitudes.
Does science aim at providing an account of the world that is literally true or objectively true? Understanding the difference requires paying close attention to metaphor and its role in science. In The Third Lens, Andrew S. Reynolds argues that metaphors, like microscopes and other instruments, are a vital tool in the construction of scientific knowledge and explanations of how the world works. More than just rhetorical devices for conveying difficult ideas, metaphors provide the conceptual means with which scientists interpret and intervene in the world.
Reynolds here investigates the role of metaphors in the creation of scientific concepts, theories, and explanations, using cell theory as his primary case study. He explores the history of key metaphors that have informed the field and the experimental, philosophical, and social circumstances under which they have emerged, risen in popularity, and in some cases faded from view. How we think of cells—as chambers, organisms, or even machines—makes a difference to scientific practice. Consequently, an accurate picture of how scientific knowledge is made requires us to understand how the metaphors scientists use—and the social values that often surreptitiously accompany them—influence our understanding of the world, and, ultimately, of ourselves.
The influence of metaphor isn’t limited to how we think about cells or proteins: in some cases they can even lead to real material change in the very nature of the thing in question, as scientists use technology to alter the reality to fit the metaphor. Drawing out the implications of science’s reliance upon metaphor, The Third Lens will be of interest to anyone working in the areas of history and philosophy of science, science studies, cell and molecular biology, science education and communication, and metaphor in general.
Rarely has a scholar attained such popular acclaim merely by doing what he does best and enjoys most. But such is Stephen Jay Gould’s command of paleontology and evolutionary theory, and his gift for brilliant explication, that he has brought dust and dead bones to life, and developed an immense following for the seeming arcana of this field.
In Time’s Arrow, Time’s Cycle his subject is nothing less than geology’s signal contribution to human thought—the discovery of “deep time,” the vastness of earth’s history, a history so ancient that we can comprehend it only as metaphor. He follows a single thread through three documents that mark the transition in our thinking from thousands to billions of years: Thomas Burnet’s four-volume Sacred Theory of the Earth (1680–1690), James Hutton’s Theory of the Earth (1795), and Charles Lyell’s three-volume Principles of Geology (1830–1833).
Gould’s major theme is the role of metaphor in the formulation and testing of scientific theories—in this case the insight provided by the oldest traditional dichotomy of Judeo-Christian thought: the directionality of time’s arrow or the immanence of time’s cycle. Gould follows these metaphors through these three great documents and shows how their influence, more than the empirical observation of rocks in the field, provoked the supposed discovery of deep time by Hutton and Lyell. Gould breaks through the traditional “cardboard” history of geological textbooks (the progressive march to truth inspired by more and better observations) by showing that Burnet, the villain of conventional accounts, was a rationalist (not a theologically driven miracle-monger) whose rich reconstruction of earth history emphasized the need for both time’s arrow (narrative history) and time’s cycle (immanent laws), while Hutton and Lyell, our traditional heroes, denied the richness of history by their exclusive focus upon time’s arrow.
Waiting for the Sky to Fall: The Age of Verticality in American Narrative by Ruth Mackay traces the figures of flight, grievous falls, and collapsing towers, all of which haunt American narratives before and after 9/11. Mackay examines how these events prefigure 9/11, exploring the narrative residue left by the “end” of horizontal space—when settlers reached America’s Pacific Coast, leaving nowhere westward on the continent to go. She then continues into the aftermath of the fall of the Twin Towers. This period of time marks an era of verticality: an age that offers a transformed concept of the limits of space, entwined with a sense of anxiety and trepidation.
With this study, Mackay asks: In what oblique ways has verticality leaked into American narrative? Why do metaphors of up and down recur across the twentieth century? With close readings of Jonathan Safran Foer’s Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Winsor McCay’s comic strip Little Nemo in Slumberland, Upton Sinclair’s Oil! and its film rendering There Will Be Blood, Allen Ginsberg’s poetic dissections of the nuclear bomb, and Leslie Marmon Silko’s imagining of flight in Almanac of the Dead, this interdisciplinary study culminates with a discussion of Philippe Petit’s tightrope walk between the Twin Towers. Waiting for the Sky to Fall examines how vertical representation cleaves to, and often transforms the associations of, specific events that are physically and visually disorienting, disquieting, or even traumatic.
This study by Phillip Eubanks challenges traditional accounts of metaphor and significantly expands theories of "conceptual" metaphor by examining Trade Is War metaphor as it occurs in concrete discourse.
Although scholarly interest in metaphor as an aesthetic, linguistic, and cognitive phenomenon has long endured, Eubanks is among the first to consider metaphor in its sociohistorical role. Questioning major accounts of metaphor from Aristotle to the present, Eubanks argues that metaphor is not just influenced by but actually is constituted by its concrete operation.
Far-reaching in its implications for our understanding of metaphor, Eubanks’s premise enables us to see metaphor as a sweeping rhetorical entity even as it accounts for the more localized operations of metaphor of interest to linguists, philosophers of language, and cognitive scientists. Providing a new model of metaphoric functioning, Eubanks reconsiders the most promising account of metaphor to date, the notion of "conceptual metaphor.”
Eubanks focuses on the conceptual metaphor Trade Is War—a metaphor found wherever people discuss business and commerce—to develop his rhetorical model of metaphor. He analyzes Trade Is War as it occurs in the print news media, on television discussion shows, in academic works, in popular nonfiction and novels, in historic economic commentary, and in focus group talk. While these examples do reveal a rich variety in the make-up of Trade Is War, much more than mere variety is at stake.
Trade Is War is implicated in an extended and rhetorically complex conversation with other metaphors and literal concepts: trade is peace, Trade Is a Game, Trade Is Friendship, Trade is a Journey, and Markets Are Containers. The recognition and analysis of this constituting conversation furthers a reevaluation theory. What also emerges, however, is a valuable portrait of the discourse of trade itself, a discourse that depends importantly upon a responsive interchange of metaphors.