Metaphor From the Ground Up : Understanding Figurative Language in Context
Daniel C. Strack

Metaphor from the Ground Up introduces Conceptual Filtering Theory, a theory of mental processing that describes figurative language communication in terms of conceptual domain projection and contextual disambiguation. In an attempt to match theoretical observations from cognitive semantics and pragmatics with related knowledge about mental processes from cognitive neuroscience, CFT first examines the distributed nature of conceptualization and then uses this background information to explain metonymic “binding” and metaphoric “mapping.” Once the perceptual origins of metonymy and metaphor have been demonstrated, CFT offers a detailed account of how salient aspects of conceptualization differentially combine to achieve predictable inferencing results in linguistic communication. In addition, CFT characterizes the role of contextual effects in pruning salient inferencing options and demonstrates how situational frames can be manipulated to guide semantic outcomes. The book as a whole will assert that figurative language processing cannot be characterized in terms of a generically constituted base system that receives inputs and spits out predictable results according to logical probability in a situational vacuum. Rather, it is a dynamic, context-sensitive process that continually reweights the underlying system so as to rapidly select situation-relevant lines of inferencing from among a variety of salient inferencing options.

Lexington Books
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