David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Mind and Language 21 (3):434–458 (2006)
Cognitive theories of metaphor understanding are typically described in terms of the mappings between different kinds of abstract, schematic, disembodied knowledge. My claim in this paper is that part of our ability to make sense of metaphorical language, both individual utterances and extended narratives, resides in the automatic construction of a simulation whereby we imagine performing the bodily actions referred to in the language. Thus, understanding metaphorical expressions like ‘grasp a concept’ or ‘get over’ an emotion involve simulating what it must be like to engage in these specific activities, even though these actions are, strictly speaking, impossible to physically perform. This process of building a simulation, one that is fundamentally embodied in being constrained by past and present bodily experiences, has specific consequences for how verbal metaphors are understood, and how cognitive scientists, more generally, characterize the nature of metaphorical language and thought.
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References found in this work BETA
George Lakoff & Mark Johnson (1999). Philosophy in the Flesh the Embodied Mind and its Challenge to Western Thought.
Gregory Currie & Ian Ravenscroft (2002). Recreative Minds: Imagination in Philosophy and Psychology. Oxford University Press.
Raymond W. Gibbs (2006). Embodiment and Cognitive Science. New York ;Cambridge University Press.
J. Decety (1999). Neural Mechanisms Subserving the Perception of Human Actions. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 3 (5):172-178.
Nicole L. Wilson & Raymond W. Gibbs (2007). Real and Imagined Body Movement Primes Metaphor Comprehension. Cognitive Science 31 (4):721-731.
Citations of this work BETA
Brian A. Irwin (forthcoming). An Enactivist Account of Abstract Words: Lessons From Merleau-Ponty. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences:1-21.
Corinne L. Bloch‐Mullins (2015). Foundational Questions About Concepts: Context‐Sensitivity and Embodiment. Philosophy Compass 10 (12):940-952.
Raymond W. Gibbs & Marcus Perlman (2010). Language Understanding is Grounded in Experiential Simulations: A Response to Weiskopf. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 41 (3):305-308.
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Language 21 (3):434-458.
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