LINGUIST List 11.932

Mon Apr 24 2000

Disc: Literary Semantics

Editor for this issue: Karen Milligan <>


  1. jose luis guijarro, RE: 11.873, Disc: Literary Semantics

Message 1: RE: 11.873, Disc: Literary Semantics

Date: Fri, 21 Apr 2000 10:56:07 +0200
From: jose luis guijarro <>
Subject: RE: 11.873, Disc: Literary Semantics

> From: Dan Moonhawk Alford <>
> Subject: Re: 11.855, Disc: Literary Semantics

> I'd like to add that the cognitive linguists, while doing a truly bang-up
> job, go too far and even mislead when they say that metaphor is essential
> to all human language. Amethyst First Rider, a Blackfoot speaker from
> Alberta, Canada, reiterated last summer at a Bohmian Science Dialogue that
> when she is speaking her own language, no matter what it sounds like in
> English, that she's not using metaphor. Metaphor may be a kind of
> classification, but classification is not a form of metaphor. We need to
> be humble in our claims for universality, it seems to me. Just a sidenote,
> not aimed at anyone in particular. ;-)
> warm regards, moonhawk

Hi, Dan, here we go again, eh?

Did I say that metaphor is essential to all human language? My special brand
of broken English does play tricks with my communicative intentions, I am
afraid. The actual fact is that I have no idea wether metaphor or metonimy
or whatever are or are not essential. They might turn out to be, or they
will remain lateral representative functions. All I said was that neither,
nor any other trope, as far as I know, serve as a ready made device to
"manufacture" LITERARY texts as we understand them. 

As for the "humility" in our claims to universality, I really can't dig what
you mean there! Was Newton boastful because he said that gravity was a
universal law? Mind you, I don't pretend to compare myself to Newton or any
other savant, but I do think that one of the aims of scientific EXPLANATION
is to find general principles or, if you want, laws, in every domain. Maybe
this is not a humble belief... (?). Then, I am afraid that in my research, I
am NOT humble at all, for that is exactly what I try to find out --with
varying success, I hasten to add!


Jose Luis Guijarro Morales
Facultad de Filosofia y Letras
Avda. Gomez Ulla, 1
11003 Cadiz (Espa´┐Ża)
Tel. +34 956 015526
Fax. +34 956 015501
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