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Reading: Pinnacles in Long-form Literary Texts: Cross-textual Evidence for the Pervasiveness of Megam...

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Pinnacles in Long-form Literary Texts: Cross-textual Evidence for the Pervasiveness of Megametaphorical Expression

Author:

Daniel C. Strack

The University of Kitakyushu, JP
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Abstract

Various scholars have recognized how literary authors use mega-metaphor (scattered metaphorical domain references) to unobtrusively shape their narratives. Corpus analysis proves useful not only in identifying the presence of such metaphorical systems in long-form texts but also in assessing their relative prominence across multiple texts. This article will examine 50 randomly selected literary narratives so as to discern the extent to which the relatively uncommon but metaphorically replete word pinnacle contributes surreptitious metaphorical meaning to the literary texts in which it is found. Results of the study confirm that the word “pinnacle,” when it is used at all, is nearly always placed so as to highlight climactic scenes or emphasize key turning points in protagonist character development. The fact that metaphorical lines of interpretation relating to certain words and phrases may be detected, not only by way of critical intuition but also through the electronic searching of multiple text corpora, demonstrates the value of cross-textual analysis strategies in certain cases. It also hints that megametaphor, rather than being a rare and idiosyncratic type of literary artifice, may be more prevalent than has been previously acknowledged.
How to Cite: Strack, D.C., 2020. Pinnacles in Long-form Literary Texts: Cross-textual Evidence for the Pervasiveness of Megametaphorical Expression. Nordic Journal of English Studies, 19(2), pp.143–165.
Published on 04 Sep 2020.
Peer Reviewed

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