The fields of metaphor studies, cognitive linguistics and multimodal discourse have given rise, in the last decades, to what we know today as “Multimodal Metaphor” (Forceville 2009), which is rooted in the Conceptual Metaphor Theory (CMT), a theory initiated by Lakoff and Johnson. This theory underpins the definition of metaphorical communication as “[…] a mode of thought” (Lakoff 1993, 210), i.e. the realization of conceptualizations not only by means of the verbal mode but also by other expressive means. These “means of expression,” referred to as “modes” by multimodal theory, are usually understood as organized sets of resources, which are shaped by society and whose use might change according to cultural context (Kress 2010, 79). Metaphorical and abstract thinking, by being imaginative by nature and unconsciously culturally inborn, can therefore be expressed in any semiotic mode alongside verbal language, such as static and moving imagery, gestures, sound. Forceville’s new conceptualization of figurative communication suggests that multimodal metaphors, in order to be defined as such, should express bodily experience (metaphor source) and the concept (metaphor target) through different modes. He claims that humans comprehend abstract concepts in terms of concrete concepts. For example, the metaphor LIFE IS A JOURNEY seeks to make the concept of LIFE intelligible through the more concrete experience of JOURNEY and the intrinsically triggered idea of path with a destination which, in metaphorical discourse, represents a feature of the source “mapped” onto the target domain (20). The book by Górska fits into this theoretical framework perfectly and integrates specific cognitive linguistic approaches into a multimodal research study of cartoons by the Polish artist Janusz Kapusta. Drawing upon image schema theory, CMT, multimodal metaphor theory, the dynamic approach to metaphor and a multimodal approach to metonymy, the author explores the spatialization of abstract concepts in verbo-pictorial aphorisms, aiming to widen and enrich the contemporary field of multimodal metaphorical thinking through an image-schematic cognitive approach. The core of her work, as she states in the Preface, and which is discussed throughout the first chapter, lies in analyzing how these verbal and pictorial modes combine to decipher those abstract concepts which underlie human knowledge.
|Titolo:||Understanding Abstract Concepts across Modes in Multimodal Discourse: A Cognitive Linguistic Approach, by Elżbieta Górska|
Mattei, Elena (Corresponding)
|Data di pubblicazione:||2020|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01.02 Recensione in Rivista|