Definitions of metaphor; Literal vs. metaphorical meaning; Metaphor and metonymy; Nonlinguistic realizations of conceptual metaphors; The scope of metaphor; Metaphor, politics, & ideology; Metaphor in literature; Metaphor in history




  1. to identify metaphors in a sample sentence or text;
  2. to gain a grasp of the basic terminology in the domain to figurative language;
  3. to discuss how debates about metaphor are key to contemporary debates in domains such as politics, economics, and history;
  4. to analyse metaphors and evaluate their functions in different contexts.
  5. to understand metaphor in relation to basic literary forms such as the autobiography and novel.




The course will comprise lectures, seminars, class activities, and on-line responses. 




100% coursework consisting of:

  • Individual Essays (50 %)
  • Group Project – oral presentation and written report (20 %)
  • Weekly postings to on-line discussion (20 %)
  • Participation in class activities: (10 %)




The primary readings include selections from Z. Kövecses (2010). Metaphor: A practical introduction. Oxford: OUP Press, and other scholarly considerations of metaphor. The course will explore metaphor through reading of: Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography (1793); Louise May Alcott’s Little Women (1868-69); and, Ann Petry’s The Street (1946). (Course material subject to possible revision.)

Additional supplementary readings will be provided at the beginning of the course.



Last updated: 13 July 2018