The Nature of Consciousness

Piero Scaruffi

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These are excerpts and elaborations from my book "The Nature of Consciousness"

Metaphor As Conceptual Blending

Gilles Fauconnier's theory of mental spaces constitutes a natural generalization of metaphor, in which the number of conceptual spaces that blend is only two: the one described by the metaphor (the "tenor") and the one which provides the description (the "vehicle").

Fauconnier adds two more spaces to deal with metaphors: the "generic" space, which represents all the shared concepts that are required by tenor and vehicle, which are necessary not only to understand the metaphor but to mediate between the tenor and the vehicle; and the "blend" space, which contains the solution, the concept generated by the metaphor. The tenor and the vehicle are reconciled thanks to the generic space and this reconciliation produces the blend space.


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