Cognitive Linguistics

Mixing Memory

Category archives for Cognitive Linguistics

Idioms, Metaphors, and Lakoff, Oh My!

Sometimes I forget that not everyone who happens upon this blog today has been reading it from day one (I mean come on, why haven’t you?). It surprises me, then, when people tell me they’ve seen no evidence that George Lakoff and Mark Johnson’s conceptual metaphor theory is, well, wrong. I guess I think that…

Pinker v. Lakoff

George Lakoff has published two new political books, Whose Freedom?: The Battle Over America’s Most Important Idea, and Thinking Points: Communicating Our American Values and Vision, as follow ups to his Moral Politics and Don’t Think of an Elephant. I haven’t read either of the new books (my New Year’s resolution this year was to…

I’ve got it! I know how we can test conceptual metaphor theory in the domain of time. Yesterday I argued that the problem with the experiments published so far is that it’s impossible to distinguish mere lexical priming (priming spatial meanings of the terms, which influences subsequent temporal reasoning) from conceptual priming due to metaphorical…

On Time, Space, and Metaphor

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: conceptual metaphor theory sucks. Why does it suck? Well, because there’s no experimental evidence for it (and plenty of evidence against it). Except, that is, in one domain: time. Specifically, the work of Lera Boroditsky, along with Dedre Gentner and her colleagues, has provided interesting demonstrations…