Conceptual Integration and Formal Expression
Metaphor and Symbolic Activity, Vol. 10, No. 3, pp. 183-203, 1995
33 Pages Posted: 30 Jul 2010
Date Written: July 28, 1995
We pursue here our exploration of conceptual blending and of the "many-space" model, which replaces the standard "two-domain" model. In blending, structure from two or more input mental spaces is projected to a separate "blended" space, which inherits partial structure from the inputs, and has emergent structure of its own. New examples are presented. We show that meaning is not compositional in the usual sense, and that blending operates to produce understandings of composite forms. Formal expression in language is a way of prompting hearer and reader to assemble and develop conceptual constructions, including blends; there is no encoding of concepts into words or decoding of words into concepts. Blending is at work in many areas of cognition and action, including metaphor, counterfactuals, and conceptual change. We point out two fundamental aspects of this general process: cross-space mapping of counterparts, and integration of events.
Keywords: grammar, blending, conceptual integration
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