The Metaphorical Horizon: Between Facts and Fictions

By April Elisabeth Pierce and Seth Taylor Garrison.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

What is a metaphor? Is it simply “what we say when
we don’t mean what we say”? Do metaphors express deeper
truths about our relationship to the world? From Aristotle
to Max Black, Freud to Lakoff, current critical
understanding of metaphor has developed in fits and starts,
rendering different depictions of its function and
significance at different historical moments. Is metaphor a
trope, a process, or a framework? At times, metaphor has
been considered a literary flourish, at others, it is
described as the cornerstone of truth and understanding. The
theory of metaphor is as wide-ranging as it is mystifying in
its conclusions. This essay compares philosophical attitudes
towards metaphor to the cognitive research on interacting
mind maps and mental processing, stimulating questions
concerning the frontiers of logic, meaning, and perception.
Our interdisciplinary approach will briefly highlight
several critical perspectives on metaphor, and then compare
these perspectives to studies of synesthesia. It will be
argued that metaphor cannot be reduced to either brain
processes or linguistic formulas, but that it occurs as a
complex negotiation between an individual's perspective and
the categories of understanding. Thus, metaphors help
navigate between “facts” and “fictions”.

Keywords: Theory of Metaphor, Metaphorical Thinking

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 5, Issue 9, pp.95-106. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 629.170KB).

April Elisabeth Pierce

Student, John W. Draper Interdisciplinary Masters in Humanities and Social Thought, New York University, New York, New York, USA

April Elisabeth Pierce is working on a special masters on metaphor and cognition through the John W. Draper Interdisciplinary Masters in Humanities and Social Thought at New York University.

Seth Taylor Garrison

Student, John W. Draper Interdisciplinary Masters in Humanities and Social Thought, New York University, New York, USA

Seth Taylor Garrison is currently studying the connection between philosophy and language at New York University. His interests include metaphor, metaphysics, imagination, and narrative and cognitive constructions of reality.

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