Publication details [#8787]

Perrin, Stephen G. 1987. Metaphorical revelations: A description of metaphor as the reciprocal engagement of abstract perspectives and concrete phenomena in experience. Bakhtiniana: Revista de Estudos do Discurso 2 (4) : 251–280. 30 pp.


Metaphor is examined from an experiential perspective and its structure is metaphorically revealed to consist of (a) a verbal vehicle signifying an abstract mnemonic perspective, (b) a verbal tenor referring to a concrete existential phenomenon, (c) an ongoing sense of occasion, and (d) an immediate context of possible stimulation. The interaction between tenor and vehicle is seen as a complementary synthesis of past and present aspects of experience as mediated by expectations appropriate to an ongoing situation that is subject to environmental constraints. The novelty of metaphor is traced to anomalies in expectation. Verbal metaphors are examined as public revelations of private perspectives serving to direct communal attention toward stressful events. The power and beauty of metaphor are sought in its double accountability to both abstract and concrete phases of experience. (Stephen Perrin)