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MetaphorIts Cognitive Force and Linguistic Structure$
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Eva Feder Kittay

Print publication date: 1990

Print ISBN-13: 9780198242468

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198242468.001.0001

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Interpreting Metaphor

Interpreting Metaphor

(p.140) 4 Interpreting Metaphor


Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the nature and structure of that second-order meaning which results from a particular mapping of first-order meaning and which yields metaphor. The second-order meaning of metaphor results from the double semantic content carried by metaphor. The very first step in interpreting metaphor requires recognition that the background assumptions presumed by the context of an utterance are in conflict with such a first-order interpretation. The next step basically involves the context that frames the vehicle term. Metaphorical interpretation then is conceived as a particular function of the literal and conventional interpretation. Thus, metaphorical use of language is often more valued than literal use as it is considered to be an upgraded version that makes language more interesting.

Keywords:   second-order meaning, first-order meaning, metaphor, semantic content, assumptions, interpretation, metaphorical operator, context

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