Ontologies and conceptual metaphors in English and Mandarin

S.F. Chung, K. Ahrens, Chu-ren Huang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic research


关于经济隐喻的研究,通常都强调不同语言间隐喻的异同,而很少会注意到为何不同的语言会使用不同的概念隐喻。甚至有的研究会发现很难精确解释,为何有些隐喻在不同的语言就会有相似或相异的形式。本文示范了一种勾勒概念理据轮廓的方法——透过上层知识本体,来推论概念理据可能就是不同文化使用的概念隐喻有所异同的原因。本文以中英文为例说明此方法,也解释了为何有些概念隐喻对于中文—英文学习者而言更困难,反之亦然。||Previous studies on the teaching and learning of economic metaphors often emphasize the similarities and differences cross-linguistically. Few have looked at the reasons why different conceptual metaphor terms are used in two languages. One may even find it hard to pinpoint why some metaphors are interpreted as similar or different forms in a different language. This becomes more difficult for natural language understanding where representations of human language are made for machine to process. This paper demonstrates a methodology copable of outlining the conceptual motivations that may have caused the similarities and differences of conceptual metaphors used in different cultures. These motivations are the underlying reasons that show the shared or differing conceptual systems which were discovered through using an upper ontology ( i. e. ,the Suggested Upper Merged Ontology or SUMO) . This paper exemplifies the use of this methodology in Mandarin and English data. The results provide expla-nation as to why certain conceptual metaphors cause more difficulty to Mandarin-English learners,and vice versa.
Original languageChinese (Simplified)
Pages (from-to)195-213
Number of pages19
Journal当代语言学 (Contemporary linguistics)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Ontology
  • Conceptual metaphor
  • Cross-linguistics
  • Mandarin metaphor

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