Title

What is a Road? A sociolinguistic Analysis of Metaphor in Japanese and English Language

Presenter Information

James westFollow

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Japanese

Minor

Biology

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Tanya Romero-Gonzalez; LeRon Harrison; Yoko Hatakeyama

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

Introduction:

This study examines and attempts to explain patterns of descriptions of various images by native speakers of English and Japanese through the lens of Lakoff and Johnson's "Metaphors We Live By."

Methods:

A sixteen-question survey designed for this experiment was answered by a number of native English and Japanese speakers. The answers given to this survey were analyzed.

Results:

Descriptions of images given by both native Japanese and English speakers rarely used metaphorical language, but the metaphorical descriptions which were used indicate some of the differences in the metaphorical understandings of complex concepts perceived through the lens of each language.

Conclusion:

This survey indicated a number of metaphors in each language, including but not limited to “The heart is emotion” across both English and Japanese, and “The heart is a building” exclusively in Japanese

Highlights:

The largest difference in descriptions between English and Japanese responses was in the perception of where in the world an image may have been taken. For one image, English-speaking responses were split evenly between the image having been taken in Spain, France, and Italy. Japanese-speaking respondents almost exclusively indicated that the photo was taken in Spain, with a single response indicating Italy.

Other Scholars Week Event

GLT 400 Fall 2020

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What is a Road? A sociolinguistic Analysis of Metaphor in Japanese and English Language

Introduction:

This study examines and attempts to explain patterns of descriptions of various images by native speakers of English and Japanese through the lens of Lakoff and Johnson's "Metaphors We Live By."

Methods:

A sixteen-question survey designed for this experiment was answered by a number of native English and Japanese speakers. The answers given to this survey were analyzed.

Results:

Descriptions of images given by both native Japanese and English speakers rarely used metaphorical language, but the metaphorical descriptions which were used indicate some of the differences in the metaphorical understandings of complex concepts perceived through the lens of each language.

Conclusion:

This survey indicated a number of metaphors in each language, including but not limited to “The heart is emotion” across both English and Japanese, and “The heart is a building” exclusively in Japanese

Highlights:

The largest difference in descriptions between English and Japanese responses was in the perception of where in the world an image may have been taken. For one image, English-speaking responses were split evenly between the image having been taken in Spain, France, and Italy. Japanese-speaking respondents almost exclusively indicated that the photo was taken in Spain, with a single response indicating Italy.