Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News


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Deignan, this volume, Hilpert, this volume, Koller, this volume , or it can be limited to particular contexts that are considered to be promising cf. Hanks, , this volume or relevant to the research question Stefanowitsch In a second step, the researcher then identifies the target domains in which these items occur, and thus, the metaphorical or metonymic mappings in which they participate. How and on the basis of what criteria this identification proceeds is, of course, a non-trivial matter cf.

Section 4 below. Often, research on conceptual mappings is concerned with particular target domains and the conceptual mappings that structure it.

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In these cases, the source-domain oriented approach described in the preceding section cannot be fruitfully applied, since it requires a priori knowledge of the source domains that are likely to be found in the target domain. While Partingtons keywords-based method goes some way towards solving this issue, it comes with two caveats. First, it requires the existence of large bodies of representative and relatively monothematic texts dealing with the target domain; thus, it can be fruitfully applied in the case of target domains like economics, sports, or politics, but it is less clear how it could be applied with target domains like emotions, mental activity, perception, etc.

Second, it will identify only those source domains that are associated with particular words whose frequencies are sufficiently inflated in the target-domain texts to achieve keyword status; thus, it will not identify metaphorical expressions exhaustively or systematically. A number of researchers have suggested an alternative strategy for investigating target domains Koivisto-Alanko , Tissari , Stefanowitsch, , this volume, Koivisto-Alanko and Tissari, this volume.

They begin by selecting and searching for lexical items referring directly to target-domain concepts. In a second step, the researcher then identifies those cases where these words are embedded in metaphorical expressions and thus, the metaphorical mappings occurring in the target domain it is not clear whether this method can be applied to the investigation of metonymy.

Clearly, this method will only identify a subset of metaphorical expressions, namely those that contain target-domain vocabulary.

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For example, it will identify His pent-up anger welled up inside him, but not We got a rise out of him both from Lakoff There is initial evidence, however, that this subset of expressions, referred to by Stefanowitsch , this volume as metaphor-. The two methods described above can be combined, i. Given these preconditions, the annotation and extraction itself is a relatively easy task.

Like the other two methods, this one is not perfect. First, manual post-editing is required to get rid of false hits due to, for example, homographs or the literal use of both source and target domain vocabulary in a single sentence note, however, that this post-editing presumably takes less time than the completely manual annotation required by the previously discussed strategies.

A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News

Recall will also not be perfect, since it is probably impossible to list source and target domain vocabulary exhaustively, and thus specific lexical items will be missing on the lists; however, a human annotator in the methods described above will almost certainly also miss examples, so this is not really a disadvantage specific to this method. Third, this method can only be used straightforwardly to identify expressions manifesting conceptual mappings that are known in advance although more exploratory extensions are imaginable, given word lists for many different potential source and target domains.

Finally, this method, like the one discussed in ii above, will only capture those metaphorical expressions that Stefanowitsch , this volume refers to as metaphorical patterns.

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However, these disadvantages are counterbalanced by the fact that the method allows fast annotation of vast amounts of text, far beyond what a human annotator could achieve in a reasonable time frame. Thus, it is surprising that it has not, so far, been used more widely. An intriguing possibility for the automatic retrieval of metaphors is indicated by Goatly , Ch. Goatly discusses a wide variety of explicit linguistic devices that may signal the presence of a metaphor, inclucing, for example, metalinguistic expressions referring to non-literal-.

Although it certainly seems to be a promising strategy to extract metaphors on the basis of such markers, no major study so far has applied this method systematically. It should also be noted that an initial evaluation of the method casts some doubt on its utility: Wallington, Barnden, Barnden, Ferguson and Glasbey find that Goatlys markers do not in fact consistently signal the presence of metaphorical expressions. Extending strategy i , the researcher can specify a potential source domain and search directly for all lexical items belonging to that source domain instead of specifying sets of sourcedomain lexemes that will always be incomplete.

An example for this strategy is the work by Semino , this volume , which makes use of a corpus annotated for expressions reporting speech activity. In corpora that are exhaustively annotated, of course, extensions of the strategies in ii and iii are also possible, i. Of course, as mentioned above, the necessary corpora are not currently widely available. Even where they are, however, researchers face an additional problem: semantically annotated corpora may not be consistent with respect to the semantic fields that they assign words to; unless the annotation scheme is informed by considerations of metaphor and metonymy analysis, these semantic fields may simply be assigned on the basis of the target domain.

For example, the verb rise may be annotated as belonging to the semantic field of quantity in Inflation rose to an all-time high and to the semantic field of motion in The plane rose to a height of thirty thousand feet cf. Castelln et. In a corpus thus annotated, expressions manifesting conceptual mappings could not be identified on the basis of the annotation. A more general problem of annotated corpora is, of course, that the researcher has to rely on the annotation this is also true for studies based on thesauri, for example, Allan, this volume.

Large corpora annotated for conceptual mappings would be a valuable resource for metaphor research.

If such corpora were available, the task of extracting conceptual mappings would become trivial. Of course, in order to create such corpora, the task of annotating metaphorical mappings appropriately in the first place becomes the problem this problem will be discussed in more detail in Section 4 below. Results of the corpus-based approaches. In addition, the focus on the cognitive or conceptual nature of metaphor and metonymy has led to a certain neglect of detailed, bottom-up analysis, and, in consequence, to a disregard of many aspects of the linguistic nature of metaphor.

Concerning these, there is a whole range of issues that are slowly beginning to be addressed in a systematic way. The nature of particular conceptual mappings. In many cases, this richness of the data inevitably leads to new insights.

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It may, for example, necessitate a reanalysis of the way that a mapping is best defined, as Semino this volume shows when she reanalyzes argument is war as antagonistic communication is physical conflict. An attempt at exhaustiveness also requires the researcher to deal with the issue that linguistic expressions may exhibit different degrees of metaphoricity or metonymicity cf.

Hanks, this volume, cf.


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The inherently quantitative nature of corpus data also puts the apparently monolithic importance of some frequently discussed mappings into perspective. For example, Semino this volume finds that the two textbook cases of communication metaphors, the argument-as-war metaphor and the conduit metaphor, account for just under 50 per cent of all communication metaphors; Stefanowitsch this volume reports very similar proportions for previously postulated metaphors in the domain of emotions.

For metonymy, Markert and Nissim this volume as well as Hilpert this volume also find mappings that are not discussed in the previous literature at all. Of course, the use of frequency data concerning conceptual mappings is not limited to general assessments of the importance of a given mapping; it can also serve as a basis for determining which mappings are most strongly associated with a particular target domain see Koivisto-Alanko and Tissari, this volume or a particular subdomain within a target domain see Stefanowitsch, this volume.

Finally, corpus data allow us in principle to assess the systematicity of conceptual mappings. For example, Deignan b finds that often only one of a pair of antonymous source domain adjectives such as hot and cold can be mapped onto a given target domain, and Stefanowitsch this volume notes that target domains that are plausibly thought of as opposites are not necessarily significantly associated with source domains that are thought of as opposites for example, while the source domain light plays a central role in the target domain happiness, the source domain darkness plays a relatively minor role in the target domain sadness.

Source-domain oriented studies and target-domain oriented studies often complement each other in the investigation of these aspects of conceptual mappings. For example, while source-domain oriented studies often reveal a much broader set of target-domains for any given source item than we might have expected on the basis of introspective data, target-domain oriented studies constrain this range by allowing us to identify those mappings and source domains that are significantly associated with a given target domain. Structural properties of expressions instantiating conceptual mappings.

One of the most intriguing insights gained from corpus-based approaches to metaphor and metonymy is that there are often formal differences be-. For example, Deignan finds that metaphorical and metonymic uses of lexical items frequently prefer a different word class than literal uses , a, this volume. Also, literal and non-literal uses are often associated with different colligates or different grammatical patterns for metaphor, see Deignan , Hanks , this volume; for metonymy cf.

Hilpert, this volume, Markert and Nissim c. Deignan this volume even finds that different metaphorical uses of the same source-domain item may prefer different inflectional forms. Sometimes, these differences can be accounted for by a careful application of the principles of the Conceptual Theory of Metaphor.

For example, Deignan this volume shows that singular flame is typically used in positively construed target domains, while plural flames is typically used in negatively construed target domains. She argues that this is due to the fact that the topology of the source domain is preserved in the mapping; a single flame is naturally associated with positive situations as in the case of the Olympic flame , while more than one flame is naturally associated with negative situations such as uncontrollable fires.

At other times, it seems as though we simply have to accept that there are item-specific differences regarding the participation of source-domain vocabulary in conceptual mappings; such differences are often simply a consequence of conventionalization lexicalization, grammaticalization, etc. Deignan, this volume, Hanks , this volume, Hilpert, this volume. Hilpert hints at the possibility that such unique properties may play an important role in processing metonymic expressions, in that they potentially allow the hearer to side-step a lengthy inferencing process. Clearly, this possibility is worthy of further investigation.

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Textual properties of conceptual mappings. In the simplest case, this concerns the importance of conceptual mappings in general or of particular conceptual mappings in particular genres cf. Koller, this volume, who investigates the type-token ratio of selected. Partingtons , this volume method for identifying important metaphors in a given discourse area. Thus, while the ubiquity of metaphor and metonymy in everyday language use is an article of faith in the Conceptual Theory of Metaphor, corpus-based studies allow the researcher to put such claims to the test for the first time.

Of course, the corpus-based investigation of metaphors in a given genre or discourse does not stop at the assessment of their general frequency. There is a tradition of text-based metaphor analysis within the Conceptual Theory of Metaphor that precedes strictly corpus-based approaches and that deals with the ideological, social, communicative and cultural functions of metaphor cf.

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Semino and Masci for the discourse domain politics, Jkel for economy and mental activity. This type of detailed qualitative analysis based on manual extraction can be aided and fruitfully complemented by corpus-based methods cf.

Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News
Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News
Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News
Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News
Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News
Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News
Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News Metaphor and Entertainment: A Corpus-Based Approach to Language in Chinese Online News

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