Liane Ströbel

Gerard Steen: Sensory-Motor Concepts and Metaphor in Usage

This paper explores the relation between metaphor and Sensory Motor concepts in language use. Sensory Motor concepts in language use are defined as a number of semanticfields distinguished by WMatrix, comprising Sensory lexis and Motor lexis, including words under ‘Sight’ and ‘Sound’ as well as ‘Moving, Coming, Going’ and ‘Pushing, Putting, Pulling’. The incidence of this lexis and its metaphorical use is examined in the VU Amsterdam Metaphor Corpus, a 190,000 word selection from BNC Baby anno- tated for metaphor. The relation between the selected semantic fields and metaphorical and non-metaphorical use reveals a substantial distinction between the metaphorical use of Sensory Motor lexis and all other lexis as well as between the metaphorical use of Sensory lexis and Motor lexis. Interactions with word class and with genre are also explored, indicating more specific behavior of each of the various groups of lexis expressing the distinct concept categories. The paper concludes by suggesting that Sensory-Motor concepts may indeed play a special role in metaphorical language use, and that additional distinctions are needed to capture the four-way interaction between metaphor, word class, register and semantic field.


  1. Michiel van Elk: Preface
  2. Liane Ströbel: What’s so fascinating about Sensory-Motor Concepts?
  3. Liane Ströbel: Sensory-Motor Concepts and Language
  4. Liane Ströbel: The Diversity of Sensory-Motor Concepts and its Implications
  5. Liane Ströbel: Sensory-Motor Concepts and Perception
  6. Raymond W. Gibbs: Experimental and Corpus Studies on Embodied Metaphoric Meaning 
  7. Valentina Cuccio: Inferential Communication in the Embodied Language Paradigm
  8. Johann-Mattis List, Anselm Terhalle and Daniel Schulzek: Traces of Embodiment in Chinese Character Formation A Frame Approach to the Interaction of Writing, Speaking, and Meaning 
  9. Wolfgang G. Müller: Motion and Emotion. The application of sensory-motor concepts to the representation of emotion in literature 
  10. Gerard Steen: Sensory-Motor Concepts and Metaphor in Usage
  11. Ralf Naumann: Dynamics in the Brain and Dynamic Frame Theory for Action Verbs
  12. Sander Lestrade: The place of Place (according to spatial case)
  13. Andrea Bellavia: Force Change Schemas and Excessive Actions: How High-Level Cognitive Operations Constrain Aspect in Idiomatic Constructions 
  14. Lionel Brunel, Denis Brouillet, Rémy Versace: The Sensory Nature of Knowledge
  15. Martin V.Bütz and Daniel Zöllner: Towards Grounding Compositional Concept Structures in Self-organizing Neural Encodings
  16. Alex Tillas: Grounding Cognition: The Role of Language in Thinking 
  17. Olaf Hauk: Postface