The Conceptualisation of FEAR through Conceptual Metonymy and Metaphor in Jordanian Arabic


This study aims to examine the figurative devices used in Jordanian Arabic (JA) to conceptualise the emotion of FEAR. It investigates whether FEAR in JA can be conceptualised: (1) universally, on the basis of human embodied experiences; and (2) socioculturally, on the basis of culture specific schemas. The study adopts Conceptual Metaphor Theory (CMT) as its main theoretical framework to compare and contrast the similarities and/or differences in the conceptualisations of FEAR in both JA and English. Data are collected from two sources: namely, the comment section on Facebook pages of cinemas in Amman that show horror and thriller movies, and 12 JA native speaker informants. Data analysis of the linguistic metonymical and metaphorical expressions shows that three figurative devices are used to conceptualise FEAR in JA: Conceptual metonymy, conceptual metaphor and conceptual metaphtonymy. Data analysis of the linguistic realisations in JA and English also demonstrate that both languages exhibit similarities and differences in the conceptualisations of FEAR. The similarities between the two languages are explained by relying on universal embodied cognition, whereas the differences are accounted for in terms of cultural filtering of general universal conceptualisations, reflecting experiences that are more common to a particular sociocultural group.


Aseel Zibin and Jihad M. Hamdan


cognitive linguistics, embodiment, metonymy, metaphor, semantics