Metaphor has long provided a rich way to speak about the unspeakable, to refer to delicate issues. Sex is one such area. This book follows a cognitive-linguistic and relevance-theoretic approach to the language of sex, considering metaphor as a bridge that brings together mind and language. It does this through the analysis of the antithetical mechanisms of verbal mitigation and offence. These two mechanisms are (more commonly know as) euphemism and (its lesser known companion term) dysphemism.
The volume reflects on the social and communicative functions that sexual metaphors perform in a sample of almost two hundred postings taken from internet forums. How do people think about sex? How do people avoid talking about sex? How do people paraphrase sexual topics? It offers an account of how real language users understand sexual taboo in present-day English and also a great grounding in manual corpus work on a qualitative level.
Eliecer Crespo-Fernandez is Lecturer at the Department of Modern Languages, University of Castile-La Mancha, Spain.
Foreword by Keith Allan, Emeritus Professor of Linguistics at Monash University, Australia Preface Acknowledgements Conventions in the Text Introduction Part I: Metaphor, Euphemism and Dysphemism 1. Euphemism and Dysphemism along Cognitive Lines 2. The Cognitive Dimension of Euphemism and Dysphemism Part II: Sex-Related Metaphors in Internet Forums 3. Euphemistic Metaphors 4. Dysphemistic Metaphors 5. Conclusions and Final Remarks Appendix I: Euphemistic Metaphors Classified by Source Domain Appendix II: Dysphemistic Metaphors Classified by Source Domain References Index