A Socio-Cultural History of the Machine Metaphor

Review of Cognitive Linguistics (2013), 11, 1, p. 145-162

25 Pages Posted: 15 Jul 2013 Last revised: 24 Nov 2014

See all articles by Vladimir Glebkin

Vladimir Glebkin

Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration; Gymnasium 1514

Date Written: July 15, 2013

Abstract

In Michelangelo Antonioni’s film “Blow-up”, a scene of affection, after enlarging the negatives, transforms into a scene of an attempted or an actual murder. It seems a good image to characterize the change of the initial view of conceptual metaphor from a more precise perspective. The conceptual metaphor theory emerged with the claim that primary metaphors, such as Categories Are Containers, More Is Up, Affection Is Warmth, and even Time Is Money, were determined by the fundamental constants of our perceptual experience; hence, they could not change or evolve, and had no history. Later, however, plenty of studies have provided strong evidence that such metaphors, being much more complicated structures, essentially rest on the cultural-historical ground. The article can be considered as a step in this direction. It addresses the machine metaphor as a cultural-historical phenomenon examining its development from Antiquity to Early Modernity. The author reveals that conceptual machine metaphor appears in the Middle Ages, long before Newton and the Industrial Revolution, in the wake of the transformation of basic elements of the cultural model from Antiquity to the Middle Ages.

Keywords: conceptual metaphor theory, machine metaphor, cultural-historical perspective, Antiquity, the Middle Ages

Suggested Citation

Glebkin, Vladimir, A Socio-Cultural History of the Machine Metaphor (July 15, 2013). Review of Cognitive Linguistics (2013), 11, 1, p. 145-162. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2293816

Vladimir Glebkin (Contact Author)

Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration ( email )

Prospect Vernadskogo, 82
Moscow, 119571
Russia

Gymnasium 1514 ( email )

Krupskoy str., h.12
Moscow, 119311
Russia
+7-499-131-80-38 (Phone)
+7-499-131-36-86 (Fax)

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