With Special Emphasis on Social Networks and Folksonomies
1. Introduction 1
1 1. Introduction It is a well-known fact that our most important abstract concepts (e.g., emotions) are usually characterized by metaphorical pluralism (Lakoff and Johnson 1999: 70), i.e., conceptualization of a single target concept in terms of multiple source concepts. For example, LOVE is simultaneously A UNITY OF TWO COMPLEMEN- TARY PARTS (e.g., she’s my better half), A FLUID IN A CONTAINER (e.g., she was overflowing with love), A PHYSICAL FORCE (e.g., I was magnetically drawn to her), CLOSENESS (e.g., they’re very close), POSSESSION (e.g., you’re mine and I’m yours), INSANITY (e.g., I’m crazy about you), WAR (e.g., she conquered him), MAGIC (e.g., she is bewitching), FIRE (e.g., I’m burning with love), etc. (Kövecses 2000: 26-27). In addition to abstract concepts, metaphorical pluralism often emerges when, as a consequence of a technological innovation, language users need to verbalize (i.e., find expressions that can be used to refer to) a new, highly complex con- crete concept such as, for example, the Internet (Gehring 2004: 10). Indeed, given the complexity and the multi-functionality of the global computer net- workas is well-known, the Internet is used in a variety of ways, e.g., for communication, commerce, entertainment, etc.it is not surprising that in addi- tion to being a series of tubes and a rubbish heap, the Internet is also often re- ferred to as agora, electronic frontier, cyberspace, global village, empyrean realm, information superhighway, ocean of information, container, prosthesis for the senses or limbs, city, etc. Each of these metaphors seems...
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