Metaphor, Simile, and the Exaggeration of Likeness

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Metaphor, Simile, and the Exaggeration of Likeness. / Barnden, John.

In: Metaphor and Symbol, Vol. 30, No. 1, 02.01.2015, p. 41-62.

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@article{fc68501a2ec7445095460966ddddcffd,
title = "Metaphor, Simile, and the Exaggeration of Likeness",
abstract = "This article reveals an overlooked way of interpreting sentences like “The Internet is crack [cocaine]” or “Libraries are supermarkets.” Many existing theories of metaphor could apply here. However, they can instead be interpreted in a likeness-exaggerating way, under which “Libraries are supermarkets” is simply an exaggerated way of saying that libraries are like supermarkets to a very high degree. This interpretation option follows from simple, general considerations about exaggeration and likeness scales. In this way it is preferable to the abbreviated-simile view of metaphor, and in any case it can be added to any existing metaphor account. It has broad significance for the theory of metaphor and simile, but also provides a new, straightforward explanation of the special, likeness-strengthening effect in utterances such as “Libraries aren{\textquoteright}t merely like supermarkets, they are supermarkets.” This effect exists despite evidence that X-is-Y metaphors do not generally convey more likeness than corresponding similes.",
author = "John Barnden",
year = "2015",
month = jan
day = "2",
doi = "10.1080/10926488.2015.980692",
language = "English",
volume = "30",
pages = "41--62",
journal = "Metaphor and Symbol",
issn = "1092-6488",
publisher = "Taylor & Francis",
number = "1",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Metaphor, Simile, and the Exaggeration of Likeness

AU - Barnden, John

PY - 2015/1/2

Y1 - 2015/1/2

N2 - This article reveals an overlooked way of interpreting sentences like “The Internet is crack [cocaine]” or “Libraries are supermarkets.” Many existing theories of metaphor could apply here. However, they can instead be interpreted in a likeness-exaggerating way, under which “Libraries are supermarkets” is simply an exaggerated way of saying that libraries are like supermarkets to a very high degree. This interpretation option follows from simple, general considerations about exaggeration and likeness scales. In this way it is preferable to the abbreviated-simile view of metaphor, and in any case it can be added to any existing metaphor account. It has broad significance for the theory of metaphor and simile, but also provides a new, straightforward explanation of the special, likeness-strengthening effect in utterances such as “Libraries aren’t merely like supermarkets, they are supermarkets.” This effect exists despite evidence that X-is-Y metaphors do not generally convey more likeness than corresponding similes.

AB - This article reveals an overlooked way of interpreting sentences like “The Internet is crack [cocaine]” or “Libraries are supermarkets.” Many existing theories of metaphor could apply here. However, they can instead be interpreted in a likeness-exaggerating way, under which “Libraries are supermarkets” is simply an exaggerated way of saying that libraries are like supermarkets to a very high degree. This interpretation option follows from simple, general considerations about exaggeration and likeness scales. In this way it is preferable to the abbreviated-simile view of metaphor, and in any case it can be added to any existing metaphor account. It has broad significance for the theory of metaphor and simile, but also provides a new, straightforward explanation of the special, likeness-strengthening effect in utterances such as “Libraries aren’t merely like supermarkets, they are supermarkets.” This effect exists despite evidence that X-is-Y metaphors do not generally convey more likeness than corresponding similes.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84919723192&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1080/10926488.2015.980692

DO - 10.1080/10926488.2015.980692

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84919723192

VL - 30

SP - 41

EP - 62

JO - Metaphor and Symbol

JF - Metaphor and Symbol

SN - 1092-6488

IS - 1

ER -