The sum and substance of the book, call it synopsis, has been made clear by the authors in the first few pages of the book and in the ensuing chapters, the approach to the subject has been elaborated, by close examination of the concept of metaphor. Metaphor is no more the concept. It is experiencing; it is what one lives by. The authors argue, “ We have found, on the contrary, that metaphor is pervasive in everyday life, not just in language but in thought and action. Our ordinary conceptual system, in terms of which we both think and act, is fundamentally metaphorical in nature.”(Lakoff, et.al, 1980 p.3)The authors launch their version of metaphor by appropriate examples like the concept of ARGUMENT and the conceptual metaphor ARGUMENT IS WAR. Next, the conceptual metaphor TIME IS MONEY is elaborated.
George Lakoff is a professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of California, Berkeley. Mark Johnson is the Knight Professor of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Oregon. Their common meeting ground is metaphor! There has been a recent spurt in interest in metaphor in most of the branches of knowledge. Linguists, philosophers and psychologists are the first converts to the working philosophy of metaphor. The intention of the authors is not to find new converts to the art or science of metaphor. It is to make them aware how they are already making extensive use of metaphors in their existing branch of knowledge. It is to convert philosophers to philosophy and psychologists to psychology, so to say! In everyday life some metaphors do small jobs and some perform mighty undertakings. The later fall into the category of highly productive metaphor schemata. The example given is, Michael Reddys conduit metaphor, to understand communication. The conduit metaphor has three constituent metaphors: IDEAS ARE OBJECTS, LINGUISTIC EXPRESSIONS ARE CONTAINERS, and