Multi-functionality of metaphor in newspaper discourse

Author: Trčková, Dita
Source document: Brno studies in English. 2011, vol. 37, iss. 1, pp. [139]-151
  • ISSN
    0524-6881 (print)
    1805-0867 (online)
Type: Article
License: Not specified license
This paper investigates cognitive and social functions that metaphor fulfils in newspaper discourse on natural catastrophes, aiming to reveal multi-functionality of figurative language. The analysis shows that natural phenomena are metaphorically constructed as ANIMALS, MONSTERS and WAR. These metaphor themes function as a conceptual tool and an effective ideological weapon. They simplify reality, hide politico-economic and social conditions, bipolarize the world, dramatize stories by appealing to readers' emotions, and create feelings of community and belonging.The analysis draws upon critical discourse analysis and the cognitive theory of metaphor, as introduced by Lakoff and Johnson (1980). The corpus used in the analysis consists of articles on the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and 2005 Hurricane Katrina, which are compiled from The Globe and Mail (2004; 2005), a Canadian national daily newspaper, and The New York Times (2004; 2005), an American national daily newspaper.
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