Proceedings of The 11th International Conference on Humanities, Psychology and Social Sciences
Resistance and Discontent via the Conceptual Metaphors of Belief Emerson’s Self-reliance as a Case-Study
Resistance to the dominant value-system in literature has been a recurrent pattern throughout history. In more particular words, it has been brought to life each and every time that there was a crisis like the prominent instance of the dispute over the abolition of slavery in 19th century America (Filler, 1996). By investigating the conceptual metaphors of belief (Lakoff & Johnson, 1980; 1999), the study aims at unveiling dimensions of resistance and discontent with the dominant belief-sets in Emerson’s essay Self-reliance. The task was ensured by applying Critical Metaphor Analysis (CMA) (Charteris-Black, 2004) to literary discourse. Since cognitive poetics (Lakoff & Turner, 1989) did not treat the discursive aspect of metaphor, the present study intends to cover this lack as recommended by some scholars (Fowler, 1981; Semino & Steen, 2008; Wei Li, 2016). The results are significant in terms of two aspects: First, they showed that the source domains (SDs) of metaphors pertaining to belief conveyed the author’s resistance to Western thought. Second, the scrutiny of the individual and social resources of conceptual metaphors of belief (Charteris-Black, 2004), permitted demonstrating certain metaphor properties as well as contesting the author’s claimed rebellious thought. In conclusion, the skill to empirically study metaphorical patterns and plough them back to the field of rhetoric served the unmasking of the author’s cultural and ideological motivations.
Keywords: conceptual metaphor – belief – resistance – CMA – discursive aspect – source domain (SDs) – empirically – motivations.