Chapter published in:Irony in Language Use and Communication
Edited by Angeliki Athanasiadou and Herbert L. Colston
[Figurative Thought and Language 1] 2017
► pp. 201–216
Chapter 9Irony has a metonymic basis
Irony often cooperates with many other figures like metonymy, metaphor, hyperbole, simile. Metonymy, is argued, constitutes the basis for irony. To this effect, two frequent types of constructions that exhibit irony are studied. The particular constructions that encourage and activate irony are the adjective-noun pair and the like-construction. In the former case, ironic evaluation is expressed by means of opposing scripts while in the latter, ironic evaluation is expressed by means of comparison where dissimilarity is evoked. In both cases, figuration is evoked by constructional aspects as well. Metonymy is the conceptual process which provides the foundation onto which irony, too, is built. It is highly responsible for the production and interpretation of ironic constructions.
Keywords: antonymy, comparison, contrast, figuration, hyperbole, ironic constructions, metonymy, opposition, simile
- 2.Verbal irony
- 2.1Opposing scripts
- 2.2Hyperbolic (dissimilar) comparison
- 3.Concluding remarks
Published online: 14 December 2017
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