Metaphor and Meaning in Early China

Abstract
Western scholarship on early Chinese thought has tended to either dismiss the foundational role of metaphor or to see it as a uniquely Chinese mode of apprehending the world. This article argues that, while human cognition is in fact profoundly dependent on imagistic conceptual structures, such dependence is by no means a unique feature of Chinese thought. The article reviews empirical evidence supporting the claims that human thought is fundamentally imagistic; that sensorimotor schemas are often used to structure our understanding of abstract concepts; that these schemas can be selectively combined to result in novel structures; and that there are inextricable connections between body, emotion, and thought in both everyday and philosophical cognition. It also provides a review of a recent trend where, explicitly or not, scholars from a variety of backgrounds have begun to take metaphor more seriously as a foundational bearer of philosophical meaning in early China
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    References found in this work BETA
    Lawrence W. Barsalou (1999). Perceptual Symbol Systems. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 22 (4):577-660.
    Kim-Chong Chong (2006). Zhuangzi and the Nature of Metaphor. Philosophy East and West 56 (3):370 - 391.
    Erin M. Cline (2008). Mirrors, Minds, and Metaphors. Philosophy East and West 58 (3):pp. 337-357.

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    Xiong Liwen (2008). Dialogues Between Western and Eastern Culture From the Aspect of Logic. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 36:83-90.
    Donald J. Munro (1969). The Concept of Man in Early China. Stanford, Calif.,Stanford University Press.
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