Publication details [#11488]

Xianming, Xu and Ji Hongli. 2008. The concepts of dragon in Chinese language and culture. 12 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language


The concept of dragon has different meanings in different cultures. In western cultures, the dragon is often something terrible - a fire-breathing demon with wings - a symbol of evil and violence. In Chinese culture, on the other hand, the dragon is a widely-revered totem, symbolizing power, authority, talent, wealth, prosperity and good luck. When Chinese people speak of the dragon, many different categories can be represented through the concept. Why do Chinese people have so many dragon-related concepts? How is the distinctive concept dragon organized cognitively? This paper aims to provide a semantic analysis to the concept dragon by using prototype as a main theory (Lakoff, 1987). (Yu Xianming and Ji Hongli)