- A dictionary gives definitions, not decisions: On using a dictionary to identify the basic senses of words
- Metaphor and the Social World
- Volume | Issue number
- 5 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication (ACLC)
The use of a dictionary in metaphor identification may lead to conflicts between sense descriptions in the dictionary and analysts’ (native speaker) intuitions about word meanings. This paper offers suggestions for dealing with these conflicts by focusing on the descriptive rather than prescriptive role of the dictionary and the autonomy of the researcher. We argue that whether researchers decide to follow the dictionary or favour their own intuitions and specific interests is ultimately up to them, but they should aim to make their decisions as systematic and explicit as possible.
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