Metaphors and implicatures in Shakespeare’s "Much Ado about Nothing"
For many people it seems that the application and analysis of metaphors only belongs to the field of literary studies. There are, however, such a large number of metaphorical expressions and lexicalized, so-called “frozen metaphors” in both German and English that the importance of metaphors exceeds by far their poetic usage. For Grice, metaphors result from the flouting of the first maxim (Quality) – that of not saying what one believes to be false. Metaphorical expressions hence provoke a search for the intended speaker meaning because of the obvious discrepancy between the proposition expressed by the utterance and the “falseness” of its content. This “falseness”, however, is not always clear to see. Take, for example, the metaphor “no man is an island”. It is obviously metaphorical in both content and meaning and one could deduce a whole range of weak implicatures from it but it is in no way “literally false”. Considering that Grice labelled tropes and figures of speech (such as tautology, irony and metaphor) as cases of “maxim exploitation” , it seems reasonable to analyse a text which allows for a maximum of maxim exploitation and whose author is responsible for a large number of frozen metaphors in English: What makes Shakespeare (to name just one example) extraordinary is the way he exploited this ordinary aspect of communication so that a single line or phrase triggers the discovery of a whole array of implicatures. The centre of this paper will thus be a linguistic analysis of metaphors and implicatures in Shakespeare’s play Much Ado about Nothing.
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1.1 Structural Metaphors 1.3 New Metaphors 3.2 Disambiguation 3.5 Implicatures 4.1 Small Extensions 4.2 Medium Extensions 4.3 Large Extensions ambiguity analysis of metaphors bachelor Beatrice Beatrice’s utterance Blakemore Borachio chapter Claudio’s answer Claudio’s utterance Claudio’s wedding plans concept marriage contextual assumptions contextual effects conversational implicature conversational maxim Cultural knowledge tells deduce deictic Don John Don Pedro double meaning Effort and Contextual Elizabethan World Picture example extended meaning flouting goes on crutches Grice heads hearer Hero human immediate cotext Implicatures in Proverbs implicatures that account indeterminacy and vagueness Lakoff and Johnson large number maxim exploitation medium metaphorical extension Metaphorical concepts metaphorical expressions metaphors and implicatures Metaphors we live metonymy North Star number of metaphorical order to understand philosophy of language physical object Principle of Relevance processing effort range of weak refer savage bull scene Shakespeare speaks poniards Sperber and Wilson Strong and Weak Understanding Utterances weak communication weak implicatures world buy