Expressions of time often involve motion along a path. In such representations, time units can move with respect to an observer (1), vice versa (2), or else the motion can be observed from an external viewpoint (3):
(1) Winter is coming.
(2) We are approaching April.
(3) The lecture will be followed by a reception.
TIME IS SPACE, as described by Conceptual Metaphor Theory, has become a classic set of conceptual mappings in metaphor research within cognitive linguistics. Conceptual Integration theorists have recently revised the TIME IS SPACE conceptual metaphor, and proposed a more complex structure of mappings. The result of that network of mappings is a particular event of motion through space, conditioned by its goal to represent time.
With Max Jensen, I analyze Kavafis’ simile of life as a row of candles and Manrique’s metaphor of life as a river. We show that poetic texts can rely on the timeline to build powerful affective meanings. Familiarity with complex—but conventional—templates for building conceptual blends plays a crucial role in producing and understanding creative time metaphors in poetry. MORE
Aug 25, 2013: Much more than money: Conceptual integration and the materialization of timeHow do we conceptualize time as something material that we can count, measure, even buy and sell? How widespread are the cognitive recipes for thinking about time as something tangible? How do they work? How are they exploited by literature, for creating powerful aesthetic and affective meanings? Are the same conceptual templates also used by the Social Sciences that study time concepts and the role of time in human thought?
Time metaphors have long been a central topic in cognitive linguistics. In recent research with Ursina Teuscher, we analyzed patterns of conceptual mappings shared by Michael Ende’s children's novel about time, the best-seller Momo. There we found a bank of time, an organized mafia of men in gray that exploits people's fears to steal their time, the hour-lilies, beautiful flowers that constitute the substance of our lives, and many more. We compared the conceptual templates at work in these literary fantasies with examples of time conceptualization from psychology, sociology, economics, conventional language, and real social practices. We studied three major mappings in the materialization of time: time as money in relation with time banking, time units as objects produced by an internal clock, and time supply. MORE
Poetic imagery systematically integrates archetypical emotion scenes with schematic narratives grounded on spatial cognition. These conceptual templates underlie a wide variety of poetic metaphors. For example, an erotic emission coming from the body or from a superior force (as in the arrows of love, or a light or scent from the beloved) has been repeatedly used to conceptualize love causation in literature, everyday language, or rituals, from Antiquity to the twentieth century.
To analyze these emotion discourses, we need both a historical and a cognitive perspective. Studies of the language of emotions often incur in Anglocentrism and neglect cultural diachrony in their search for universal patterns. This paper introduces a more complex cognitive model for the study of productive recipes of poetic creativity, and explores the wide diachrony of Greek poetry, with an emphasis on ancient and medieval texts. MORE