International Journal of Communication 15 (1):1060-1080 (2021)

In this article, I carry out a critical analysis of the two predominant categories of metaphors used in Western media to report the 2008 economic crisis: the metaphors representing the crisis as a disease and the ones depicting it as a natural disaster. First, I argue that these metaphors implicitly portray the markets as natural organisms, governed by their own laws and spontaneously tending toward equilibrium. Second, through reference to the philosophical concept of alienation, I show how they can be used to communicate an alienated view of the economy. Far from being innocent journalistic simplifications of complex issues, these metaphors can be very effective in ideologically presenting the neoliberal perspective and its account of the crisis as the only possible ones. By specifically examining the metaphors of the economic crisis as a disease and as a natural disaster, I also discuss how they convey a representation of the crisis which absolves some actors, blames others, and promotes as obvious the neoliberal account of the economy.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Metaphors and Time Reversibility and Irreversibility in Economic Systems.Rod Cross - 1995 - Journal of Economic Methodology 2 (1):123-134.
Data as Oil, Infrastructure or Asset? Three Metaphors of Data as Economic Value.Jan Michael Nolin - 2019 - Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society.
Ideology, Social Ethos, and the Financial Crisis.John E. Roemer - 2012 - The Journal of Ethics 16 (3):273-303.
Metaphors as Research Tools in Economics.Lukasz Hardt - 2014 - On the Horizon 22 (4):256-264.
Root Metaphor and Bioethics.Tod Chambers - 2016 - Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 59 (3):311-325.
More About Metaphor.Max Black - 1977 - Dialectica 31 (3‐4):431-457.


Added to PP index

Total views
24 ( #451,882 of 2,444,974 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
15 ( #47,082 of 2,444,974 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes