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metaphorik.de 25/2014

Do near-synonyms occur with the same metaphors: A comparison of anger terms in American English

Kaisa Turkkila



When studying metaphorical target domains by means of corpus linguistics, a problem that needs to be addressed is how to retrieve metaphorical expressions associated with that domain from a corpus. One suggested answer is metaphorical pattern analysis, which claims that we can map out all the metaphors for a target domain by choosing one word to represent the domain and by analyzing its occurrences in the corpus. The method makes the assumption, among others, that near-synonyms occur with the same metaphorical mappings. This paper tests the assumption by examining an earlier metaphorical pattern analysis of near-synonyms and by analyzing the metaphors in which anger, rage, fury, and wrath occur in the Corpus of Contemporary American English. The results show that, broadly speaking, near-synonyms do occur with the same metaphorical mappings, but not necessarily to the extent that we could always map out entire target domains with a single search word.



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