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Edited by Iwona Kraska-Szlenk

Embodiment in Cross-Linguistic Studies: The ‘Head’ edited by Iwona Kraska-Szlenk adds to linguistic studies on embodied cognition and conceptualization while focusing on one body part term from a comparative perspective. The ‘head’ is investigated as a source domain for extending multiple concepts in various target domains accessed via metaphor or metonymy. The contributions in the volume provide comparative and case studies based on analyses of the first-hand data from languages representing all continents and diversified linguistic groups, including endangered languages of Africa, Australia and Americas. The book offers new reflections on the relationship between embodiment, cultural situatedness and universal tendencies of semantic change. The findings contribute to general research on metaphor, metonymy, and polysemy within a paradigm of cognitive linguistics.

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Judit Baranyiné Kóczy

Abstract

Within the issue of embodiment (Brenzinger and Kraska-Szlenk 2014, Yu 2009, Maalej and Yu 2011, Sharifian et. al. 2008) this paper investigates how THINKING is conceptualised in Hungarian in relation to HEAD, i.e., as represented in the expressions of fej ‘head’ in the Hungarian National Corpus. It is evidenced that, in accordance with the Western tradition, THE HEAD IS THE SEAT OF INTELLECT/THINKING is a significant conceptualization in Hungarian. Within corpus analysis, two main themes are outlined: metaphorical expressions of THOUGHT and those of the activity of THINKING. It is highlighted that there are numerous different types of conceptualizations in Hungarian to refer to thought, each pointing out some distinctive aspect of thought and thinking. It is evidenced that thought can be imagined as either inanimate or animate objects, and in most conceptualizations THE HEAD-AS-CONTAINER metaphor has an overwhelming influence. Within THOUGHTS AS INANIMATE ENTITIES, the basic metaphors are: THOUGHTS AS ENTITIES IN A DRUG STORE, THOUGHTS AS THREADS, THOUGHTS AS MOVING ENTITIES and THOUGHTS AS NOISE/MUSIC, while in THOUGHTS AS ANIMATE ENTITIES are conceived as HUMANS, ANIMALS or PLANTS. It has been shown that thoughts, ideas, data and memories are imagined as entities that exist (or live) in the head.

The second part of the paper focuses on the metaphors of THINKING. Each conceptualizations (THINKING AS CRACKING ONE’S HEAD, THINKING AS A WORKING MACHINE, THINKING AS MARKING A WOODEN BOARD) reflect on different aspects of the intellect. The conceptualizations unfolded can be regarded as cultural conceptualizations (Sharifian 2011, 2017) because they are specific to the cognition of Hungarian people.

Series:

Yongxian Luo

Abstract

This paper offers an analysis of the Chinese body-part terms for ‘head’ and its related parts ‘brain’ and “neck” from a conceptual and cognitive perspective. It examines their semantic and morphological functions through the metonymic and metaphorical extensions which display both universal and language-specific tendencies derived from human experiences characteristic of this particular part of the body. Discussions focus on the historical development of these terms and how they manifest themselves in the semantic and cognitive template that is framed by the sensorimotor in the contour of the body. Comparison is made to several languages in the surrounding regions to provide cross-linguistic perspective in this semantic domain. The grammaticalization path of these body part terms is explored, as are the cognitive bases of their conceptual mapping and patterns of cognitive transfer. The study aims to contribute to a better understanding of how potentially universal features and cultural factors interact with each other in language and cognition.