Metaphors in the mind: Sources of variation in embodied metaphor

Research output: Book/ReportBook

5 Citations (Scopus)


Abstract concepts are often embodied through metaphor. For example, we talk about moving through time in metaphorical terms, as if we were moving through space, allowing us to ‘look back’ on past events. Much of the work on embodied metaphor to date has assumed a single set of universal, shared bodily experiences that motivate our understanding of abstract concepts. This book explores sources of variation in people’s experiences of embodied metaphor, including, for example, the shape and size of one’s body, one’s age, gender, state of mind, physical or linguistic impairments, personality, ideology, political stance, religious beliefs, and linguistic background. It also focuses on the ways in which people’s experiences of metaphor fluctuate over time within a single communicative event or across a lifetime. Combining theoretical argument with findings from new studies, Littlemore analyses sources of variation in embodied metaphor and provides a deeper understanding of the nature of embodied metaphor itself.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages288
ISBN (Electronic)9781108241441, 9781108271073
ISBN (Print)9781108403986
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019


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