Article published in:Mixing Metaphor
Edited by Raymond W. Gibbs, Jr.
[Metaphor in Language, Cognition, and Communication 6] 2016
► pp. 133–154
Chapter 7. When languages and cultures meet
Mixed metaphors in the discourse of Spanish speakers of English
This chapter examines the metaphors used by speakers of English as a second language (L2), showing how these are often the result of the mixing of two linguistic and conceptual systems. The resulting “hybrid” metaphors may be unconventional in English and therefore seen as problems in need of remedy. However, the concept of native speaker norms as a model for metaphor production may be unrealistic as a goal for learners. As this chapter shows, hybrid metaphors are an almost inevitable outcome of language contact, and emerge in the speech and writing of even highly proficient users of English as a L2. I illustrate the type of hybrid metaphors that learners produce, and how communicatively successful they may be in different contexts, suggesting that proposed remedies for infelicitous metaphor use by L2 users of English can most usefully be framed from the perspective of discourse.
Published online: 18 March 2016
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