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Cognitive Semiotics

Editor-in-Chief: Bundgaard, Peer F.

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Conceptual Metaphor Theory in Light of Research on Speakers’ Gestures

Alan Cienki
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  • Dept. of Language and Communication, Faculteit der Letteren, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1105, 1081 HV Amsterdam, Netherlands
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Published Online: 2014-01-18 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/cogsem.2013.5.12.349


Research on speakers’ gestures1 supports the basic idea that metaphor is not just a matter of words but a means of thinking of and experiencing, through manual activity, one domain in terms of another. However, gestures as data also raise several theoretical and methodological questions for conceptual metaphor theory, given their dynamic nature, the variability of tiieir symbolic status, and the varying degrees to which speakers are even aware of producing them. The closer examination of these graded qualities that comes with gesture analysis leads to new insights into metaphoricity itself.

Keywords: metaphor; metaphoricity; metonymy; gesture; speech.

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Published Online: 2014-01-18

Published in Print: 2009-12-01

Citation Information: Cognitive Semiotics, Volume 5, Issue 1-2, Pages 349–366, ISSN (Online) 2235-2066, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/cogsem.2013.5.12.349.

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