Embodied meaning construction
Multimodal metaphor and expressive movement in speech, gesture, and feature film
In this article, we argue that multimodal metaphors are grounded in the dynamics of felt experiences. Felt experiences are inherently affective, with immediate sensory qualities and an affective stance. We suggest that as such, they ground the emergence and activation of metaphors. We illustrate this idea with analyzed data from a film and face-to-face conversation. Our consideration of expressive movement in speech, gestures, and feature film does not therefore target the analysis of the speech and gestures of actors. Rather we suggest an approach firmly rooted in film theory, and which considers films as composed of cinematic expressive movements. The basic tenet of our proposal is as follows: seeing cinematic expressive movements trigger the same kind of felt experience in the spectator as a bodily expressive movement that comes along with speech. Expressive movements are held to provide the experiential ‘embodied’ grounds for the construction of metaphors.
Published online: 05 January 2012
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