Digging One's Own Grave Cover Image

Digging One's Own Grave
Digging One's Own Grave

Author(s): Arvo Krikmann
Subject(s): Customs / Folklore
Published by: Eesti Kirjandusmuuseum
Keywords: metaphor; metonymy; blending theory; DIVIDED PERSON METAPHOR; idioms; proverbs

Summary/Abstract: The paper aims to demonstrate that some points in the explicationof the figurative expression digging one’s own grave via the concept of blending given by Gilles Fauconnier and Mark Turner are problematic: (1) Not understanding the consequences of one’s deeds is an almost universal presuppositionof and impulse or motivation for actualizing any utterance with a forewarning or gloating content (e.g., proverbs), not the singularity characterizing just the expression of grave-digging as such. (2) The inversion of causal and temporal structure is not the case because of metonymic association between the concepts of the grave and death, as a result of which specific causal and temporal order loses any significance. Many synonymous examples can be given in which the image refers to events before the death, between the death and funeral, as well as those after burial. (3) The source domain needs not to be restricted to natural death and modern civilized funerals but should include also the cases of violent deaths, e.g., the scenario of execution and the scenario of hunting and trapping. Preliminarily, a very brief synopsis of the main phases of development of cognitive linguistic theory of metaphor and some favourite examples of blends, used also in previous works, is provided.

  • Issue Year: 2007
  • Issue No: 35
  • Page Range: 53-60
  • Page Count: 8
  • Language: English