Conceptual Metaphors

For North Americans whose first language is English, we utilize conceptual metaphors in our everyday speech in order to relate ideas and events. A lot of times we speak as if our Behavior is a Play. For example, when someone is behaving childishly, we normally tell them to, Act their own age. This may represent in our society that not only does our behavior tend have more dramatic flourishes, like hand motions, but also that our behavior may not be a model for our true personality- it is more of a production.  To add on, we speak as if Progress is Destruction. For example, when someone has stumbled across a new discovery in a technological field, we say that they are breaking new ground. America is normally categorized as one of the most progressive nations in the world, yet our speech contradicts this and suggests that progress is dangerous and it is better for things to stay the same than they are to change.

Lastly, Emotion is Destruction. People burst into tears or break into a smile when they display emotion. This subtly suggests that showing emotion, at least publicly, is frowned upon. This explains why people never want to cry in public.

About Sydney Janitschke

Sydney Janitschke is a first year student, Presidential Fellow, and Mathematics Major at Bucknell University. She is from Chicago, Illinois and speaks English and Spanish.
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