The eagle: a metaphor for power – or rather a symbol?


In modern, mainstream linguistics, metaphors and symbols do not have anything to do with each other. Metaphors are by definition motivated, no matter which theoretical approach to them one might have. One can, as Aristoteles did, treat a metaphor as the rhetoric trope comparatio in absentia (an “absent” or implicit comparison), allowing to refer to for example ‘government’ by ‘yoke’, based on a common quality (the tertium comparationis, third element of the comparison, e.g. ‘suppression/power over’). One can follow Black and lay emphasis on the interplay between focus and frame. Or one can be interested, as Lakoff and Johnson, in the so-called  conceptual metaphor as a cognitive tool helping to understand one conceptual domain in terms of …

Does he say he twice as often as she? Women, men and language

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Hvem sa hva? Kvinner, menn og språk” (English translation of the title: ”Who said what? Women, men and language”) by Helene Uri was published in Norway in 2018 and won the prestigious Brage Prize the same year. The book is about gender differences in language and language use, but it is just as much about the differential treatment and outright discrimination of primarily women, which most of the gender differences are a result of. The book is a mixed bag of observations, but still represents one of the best Scandinavian books on the topic.

Helene Uri (b. 1964) is a Norwegian linguist and author. In her 2008 novel “De besste blant os” (English translation of the …