Metaphor and meaning

Grey, William (2000) Metaphor and meaning. Minerva: An Internet Journal of Philosophy, 4 .

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Author Grey, William
Title Metaphor and meaning
Journal name Minerva: An Internet Journal of Philosophy
ISSN 1393-614X
Publication date 2000-11-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 4
Total pages 1 article
Editor Stephen Thornton
Place of publication Limerick, Ireland
Publisher Department of Philosophy, University of Limerick
Collection year 2000
Language eng
Subject C3
440108 Philosophy of Language
780199 Other
Formatted abstract
Any dictionary will quickly confirm that most of the words which we recognise as straightforward and literal are dead (or "frozen") metaphor. Moreover if one attends carefully to the sentences of any fluent speaker one finds that they contain a steady stream of metaphors. The fluid boundaries of language surround us. Typically, however, the metaphors of ordinary discourse are transparent, so we pay little or no attention to the metaphorical character of ordinary discourse and the role that metaphor serves. However, while metaphor should be a central part of any inquiry which purports to provide a general explanation of language and communication, the important puzzles about language and meaning which metaphor raises are frequently treated as a peripheral issues in semantic theory, if they are mentioned at all. A central aim of this paper is to redress this neglect and to delineate the central role which metaphor plays in semantic evolution. Contemporary philosophers of language who are exceptions to the general pattern of neglect include Davidson (1978), whose deflationary view is that that there is no special category of metaphorical meaning distinct from literal meaning, and Searle (1979).

Everyday metaphors are invisible because we understand them immediately, and therefore have no need to pay attention to their metaphorical character. Metaphors by and large are conceived and grasped with the same facility as our ordinary literal vocabulary. There is no problem in understanding metaphors: the problem is to explain how we understand them...
References "Manuscripts should be anonymised for blind refereeing..."
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry
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Created: Tue, 10 Jun 2008, 21:16:39 EST