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Abstract Chung & Ahrens

Source Domain Determination: WordNet-SUMO and Collocation

This paper attests two linguistic approaches in metaphor analysis, namely top-down and bottom-up approaches. An example of top-down approach is using knowledge domain ontology (Chung, Ahrens and Huang, 2005) by identifying domain information using taxonomy. The bottom-up approach, on the other hand, builds the knowledge domain though language use, i.e., by generating a pattern through analyzing how metaphors are used. This second approach has the underlying theoretical assumption of the prototype theory suggested by cognitive linguists such as Rosch and Mervis (1975), Labov (1973) and Wittgenstein (1978). This theory has a frequency-based definition of prototypes.

Using 2000 corpora instances of jing1ji4 ‘economy,’ this paper compares the precision of determining source domains using a) WordNet and SUMO only; b) collocation only; and c) both WordNet and SUMO as well as collocation. The results show that collocation method seems to be slightly less precise than the WordNet/SUMO method, i.e., the top-down approach seems to work better in identifying source domains in metaphor analysis.

This proposal of using two linguistic approaches to analyzing conceptual metaphor has not been carried out before, as conceptual metaphors are usually treated at the conceptual level. This paper, thus, provides empirical data for the issue. The results discussed herein will have theoretical implications as well as methodological contributions in terms of defining knowledge domains. In-progress work has incorporated more target domains for attesting the two linguistic approaches. By using more corpora data, this study aims to find more precise and large-scaled comparison of the two approaches.



Chung, Siaw-Fong, Kathleen Ahrens and Chu-Ren Huang. 2005. “Source Domains as Concept Domains in Metaphorical Expressions.” Computational Linguistics and Chinese Language Processing (CLCLP). 10. pp. 553-570.

Labov, W. 1973. “The Boundaries pf Words and their Meanings.” In Bailey C.-J. N. and R. W. Shuy. New Ways of Analysing Variation in English. Washington: Georgetown University Press. pp.340-373.

Rosch, E. and C. B. Mervis. 1975. “Family Resemblance: Studies in the Internal Structure of Categories.” Cognitive Psychology. 7. 573-605.

Wittgenstein, L. 1978. Philosophical Investigations. Translated by G.E.M. Anscombe. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.