Max Black:
MODELS AND METAPHORS (Cornell Univ Press, 1962)


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Black's interaction theory of metaphor views the metaphor as a means to reorganize the properties of the destination. A metaphor is not an isolated term, but a sentence. The metaphorical sentence, or "frame", contains the words that are used metaphorically, or the "focus". A metaphor involves two subjects, and one of them, the secondary subject, comes with a system of associated stereotyped information which can be used as a filter on the principal subject. Therefore, there is a tension between the two subjects of a metaphor, each subject is a system and the metaphor consists in a transaction between the two systems.
A metaphor does not express similarities: it creates similarity. Metaphors are based on similitude, not analogy. Metaphors act on the organization of the lexicon and the model the world. Metaphorizing is related to categorizing (the choice of a category in which to place an object is a choice of perspective), but is distinguished from it by an incongruity which causes a reordering and a new perspective.
Language is dynamic: what is literal may become metaphoric and viceversa.

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