Publication details [#9278]

Ritchie, L. David. 2009. Review of 'Metaphor and Gesture'. Alan Cienki and Cornelia Mueller (Eds). Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 2008. ISBN 978-90-272-28437, 307 pages. Metaphor and Symbol 24 (2) : 121–123.


In this timely volume, researchers in metaphor and gesture address questions at the confluence of the two topics. In addition to the obvious questions, whether (and how) gestures can express metaphors, Cienki's opening chapter poses theoretical questions about the relationship between gesture and metaphor that are interesting-but remain unresolved. Cienki claims that conceptual metaphors can be expressed independently in words and gestures and on that basis argues that the study of metaphorical gestures spontaneously produced in actual discourse can buttress the case for Conceptual Metaphor Theory. Although the data-based chapters do not present convincing evidence of gestural metaphors that are truly independent of verbal metaphors, these chapters do provide many examples of gestures that effectively illustrate, and may also amplify, accompanying verbal metaphors. (David Ritchie)