Metaphor and Political Discourse


Metaphor and Political Discourse

Analogical Reasoning in Debates about Europe

Andreas Musolff 2004

E-Book: 220 English Pages

Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan

Price: 1000 Toman

Download: Metaphor and Political Discourse: Analogical Reasoning in Debates about Europe (Musolff 2004). 

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Andreas Musolff provides an analysis of the function of metaphor in political discourse, based on material from an extensive corpus of British and German press coverage of EU politics between 1989 and 2001.The analysis of distributions of “metaphor scenarios” in the two corpus samples reveals differences in attitude and argumentative tendencies and leads to a refinement of cognitive metaphor theory. The ethical dimension of metaphor in politics is further explored with reference to Hobbes’ Leviathan .


‘…sheds new light on the discursive behaviour of metaphors and highlights the need for rethinking some of the theoretical claims of cognitive linguistics…The analysis is especially fruitful with respect to discourse history.’

– Christina Schaffner, University of Aston

‘Andreas Musolff’s book provides an overview of the impressive expertise the author has gained in the area of discourse analysis on the topic of Europe over the years. It is recommended for anyone interested in discourse analysis, and a valuable source for classes on comparative discourse analysis. The book should also be of interest to cognitive linguists working on metaphor. The author’s corpus-based cognitive analysis constitutes a significant methodological contribution to the study of the dynamics of metaphor. Musolff’s broad knowledge of metaphor theories in the fields of both linguistics and philosophy as well as his integration of contemporary thinking about language and cognition – e.g., Sperber’s ‘epidemiology’ of representations – make for a stimulating and though-provoking read.’

– Dr Jorg Zinken, Department of Psychology, University of Portsmouth

‘This book combines the strengths of a rigorous linguistic methodology with the intuitive insights of the cognitive linguistic view of metaphor. The result is a fascinating book that provides a new perspective on the study of political discourse.’

– Zoltan Kovecses, Eotvos Lorand University, Hungary

‘Metaphor and Political Discourse is a brilliant achievement for all parties: for the political world to see their work reflected in a magnifying mirror of critical distance; for the Europe Union to see how it stumbles on its journey to its shaky future house; and for scientists to see how conceptual metaphor theory empowers philosophy, psychology, and linguistics, to demonstrate their vital relevance for our understanding of the world at large.’

– Rene Dirven, Emeritus Professor, University of Duisburg

About the Author

Andreas Musolff is Reader in German at the University of Durham and has published widely on the use of figurative language in German and English public discourse.

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