DOI: 10.18413/2313-8912-2016-2-1-23-30


This article presents the results of the author's study of conceptual metaphor in political dystopia “Animal Farm” by George Orwell, an English Socialist writer. The aim of the work was to confirm the hypothesis that the work represents a conceptual metaphorical model “Totalitarian state is Animal Farm” in both structural and meaningful ways. In modern cognitive linguistics, metaphor is regarded as one of the basic mechanisms of cognitive knowledge, structuring and explanation of the world. Since metaphorization has associative connections within the human experience, it creates metaphors which borrow lexical means and meanings from the fields, which are based on the conceptualization of the people themselves and the world in the process of cognitive activity (the donor sphere). The metaphorical process requires a second element − the target sphere (a new conceptual domain). In describing the metaphorical model, we describe the model scenarios related to the model frames and components of each sample frame slots (as described by A.P. Chudinov). The dictatorship in the USSR during the reign of I.V. Stalin is transferred to the structural organization of the farmyard and the qualities of real people − on animals. Orwell gave each animal (or every kind of it) a certain set of properties, characteristics and actions that we have tried to identify and relate to the corresponding prototype. The donor sphere of the conceptual metaphor in this work is the animal world (naturemorfic and zoomorphic metaphors). The target sphere is the Soviet state with the dictatorship of the leader. The working class and the peasantry are portrayed as a spineless flock meekly obeying the will of the leader, who, with the help of his assistants, operates the “flock”. The working hypothesis was confirmed. The research results can be used both in the cognitive theory of metaphor, as well as in such areas as literature, discourse analysis, political linguistics, and others.

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