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Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
2012 (English)In: Metaphor in Use: Context, culture, and communication / [ed] Fiona MacArthur et al., Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 2012, 309-327 p.Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The persistent occurrence of the noun troll in Swedish indicates that it is a culturally entrenched notion in Sweden as well as in other Scandinavian countries. The aim of this chapter is to explore the use of troll in modern Swedish and to show how culturally-entrenched concepts, and the attitudes that are associated with them, are integrated in the language of a speech community as part of its heritage. The noun has a complex and variable sense potential, and both literal and metaphorical uses of the noun are attitudinally coloured, although these attitudes may be ambiguous and even contradictory. Using linguistic evidence gathered from dictionaries and Internet sources, this chapter describes and discusses the rich and partly antithetical set of attitudes expressed by the conventional and novel metaphorical expressions that draw on this Scandinavian mythological concept, and briefly compares Swedish uses of troll with those found in English, finding that even though the word is used also in this comparatively closely related language, it is devoid of the rich cultural associations of the donor term.


Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 2012. 309-327 p.
, Human Cognitive Processing (HCP): Cognitive Foundations of Language Structure and Use, vol. 38
Keyword [en]
attitudes, culture, metaphor, polysemy, Swedish, value reversal
National Category
Research subject
Linguistics; English; Scandinavian Languages
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-86671ISBN: 978 90 272 2392 0ISBN: 978 90 271 2392 8OAI: diva2:588781
Available from: 2013-01-16 Created: 2013-01-16 Last updated: 2013-03-18Bibliographically approved

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