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Case report

Body Metaphors – Reading the Body in Contemporary Culture

Danica Škara

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page 183-189

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This paper addresses the linguistic reframing of the human body in contemporary
culture. Our aim is to provide a linguistic description of the ways in which the body is
represented in modern English language. First, we will try to focus on body metaphors
in general. We have collected a sample of 300 words and phrases functioning as body
metaphors in modern English language. Reading the symbolism of the body we are witnessing
changes in the basic metaphorical structuring of the human body. The results
show that new vocabulary binds different fields of knowledge associated with machines
and human beings according to a shared textual frame: human as computer and computer
as human metaphor. Humans are almost blended with computers and vice versa.
This metaphorical use of the human body and its parts reveals not only currents of unconscious
though but also the structures of modern society and culture.


body; metaphor; contemporary culture

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