Publication details [#18777]

Alcaraz Carrión, Daniel and Javier Valenzuela. 2021. Duration as Length Vs Amount in English and Spanish: A Corpus Study. Metaphor and Symbol 36 (2) : 74–84.
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Previous psycholinguistic studies have suggested that English and Spanish express temporal duration through different metaphors. English tends to use the time-as-length metaphor (e.g. I have been waiting for a long time), while Spanish prefers the time-as-quantity metaphor (e.g. he esperado mucho tiempo; ‘I have waited much time’). However, these results conflated two different construals: the temporal duration construal, which can use length or quantity metaphors, (e.g. long time, that didn’t last much time) and the time-as-a-resource construal, which mostly employs quantity metaphors (e.g. you spent too much time). This study confirms through corpus linguistic data that English favors the time-as-length metaphor when expressing temporal duration, while it favors the time-as-quantity metaphor when expressing the time-as-a-resource construal. On the other hand, Spanish employs the time-as-quantity metaphor both in the duration and the resource construal. In addition, English shows a higher frequency of time-as-resource expressions, while Spanish shows a higher frequency of duration metaphors. This difference might be explained by the fact that English has been classified as a monochronic culture, conceptualizing time as a valuable object, while Spanish is a polychronic culture, categorizing time in a more abstract and flexible way.