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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Kanuri proverbs: metaphoric conceptualization of a cultural discourse
Author:Mele, Mohammed Laminu
Year:2013
Periodical:Journal of African Cultural Studies
Volume:25
Issue:3
Pages:333-348
Language:English
Geographic terms:Chad
Niger
Nigeria
Subjects:Kanuri language
proverbs
Kanuri
culture
world view
Abstract:Different cultural discourses represent various forms of idealizations of situations which emerge from enactments of the relationships between objects and ideas, and these are based on the worldview of a community of language speakers. An instance of this is the proverb, a cultural discourse that encapsulates a greater part of such worldviews and through it, culturally conditioned aspects of a people's life and their perception of their environment and social relationships. In this article, some Kanuri proverbs are examined from a conceptual-metaphoric perspective by analysing how they combine knowledge of natural phenomena or objects in the environment with social experiences, to conceptualize Kanuri worldviews and cosmology. The key discourse-enactment process in them is found to involve elements such as comparisons and contrast, which are also found in metaphoric language. However, the metaphoric comparisons employed can be described as highly cognitive-analogical processes that build up complex images of objects and situations, which eventually lead to the construction of more abstract conceptualizations of concrete realities. The ensuing interrelationships lead to the creation of different mental images that rhetorically enact universes of discourse which reflect certain cultural peculiarities such as attitudes to life, gender, morality, or other lived experiences. Explicating the inherent conceptual metaphoric relationships among incongruous elements in most of the proverbs reveals the significant conceptual processes that lie beneath the overt linguistic forms of these expressions. App., bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]
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