Cognitive linguistics is a new field of modern linguistics. Itopens the door to language understanding based on human’s experiences andknowledge about the world as well as how people conceptualize and categorizeeverything.
In Vietnam, linguists perceive this new linguisticstheory and there are also many studies about cognitive linguistics in generaland cognitive metaphor in particular. Asprofessor Toan Thang Ly (2009) figured out in his research “Cognitive linguistics, from general theory toVietnamese practice” somebasic cognitive linguistics situations and do research related to metaphor suchas “Study aboutconceptualizations of in-out, up-down and semantics presenting aspect” or”Semantics feature of”plant” and categorization of Vietnamese rural plants”. Muchnoticeable is his ideas of cognitive metaphor shaped from foreign linguists’opinions. He mentioned that from the view of cognition, conceptual metaphor isthe movement of the conceptual source domain into the target domain.
Europeanlinguists try to come up with the ideas about conceptual metaphor through their studies. George Lakoffand Mark Johnson- father of the theory conceptual metaphor, introduced thisterm for the first time in their work: MetaphorWe Live By (1980). In their work, they defined conceptual metaphor as theway we understand one conceptual domain in term of another based on parallelpoints.
Conceptual metaphor has influence on how we think, speak and how we act,also. With conceptual metaphor, people can go into the essence of metaphorworld. In which, metaphor is widened in term of mentality instead of beingrigid with linguistics rules.
To catch the real meaning of a sentence/ speech, weshould take notice of the two very important concepts in conceptual metaphor.They are Source domain and Target domain. The Target domain is what we try to understand, which isoften abstract, difficult to understand.
e.g: Emotion(fear, love, anger: she’s bursting with joy), thought (I see yourpoint), nation (the illness of thesociety), etc.The Source domain is what we use to understand the targetdomaine.g: humanbody (the heart of the city/problem), physicalhealth (a healthy society), plants (the root of the plan), building(the foundation of his idea), etc.To make it clearer, we now go into an example of Conceptualmetaphor: “Love is a journey”. In this sentence, the source domain is the”journey”- which we use to understand the target domain “love”. When we consistall the elements of a journey, we can better understand the term love. It isconceptual domain “journey” that we use to talk about conceptual domain “love”by using a system called Mapping to connect these two concepts.
For instance,when we talk about “love is a journey”, we find out that there is a system ofcorrespondences between them. SOURCE: JOURNEY TARGET: LOVE Travelers lovers Vehicle Love relationship Journey Events in the relationship Distance Progress Obstacles Difficulties Destination Goal(s) of the relationship We can also say that the concept of journey creates theconcept of love. We understand the meaning of conceptual metaphor due tounderstand the mapping between the two domainsBusiness and War:According to Oxford dictionary (9th ed.), Business is defined as “the activity ofmaking, buying, selling, supplying goods or services for money” and War as “a situation in which two or morecountries or groups of people fight again each other over a period of time” ANALYSISWhat are the elements to build up the concept War? Afterconsidering these factors, we can compare it with the concept Business toexplain why people say Business is War. The Sourcedomain “War” is a combination of many other basic domains such as goal,opponent, weapon, success, and so on.
A business is considered as a war due tothese similarities presented in a systematic mapping. Below are some suggested factors:· The first element is GOAL. In a war, each person/ team/ nation/ etc.always need to set a goal.
It may be to vie with enemy for your nation’sindependence and freedom or a fight for national liberation. A war without purpose(s)is an unjust war. It is the same for concept “Business”. In a business, tradesmenalways have their own aim(s) in a commercial transaction which finally bringabout profits for themselves. Businessmen must know what do they and customers want· The second factor is OPPONENTS.
In a war, there are two or more sideswhich is always oppose to one another. It can not be a war if lacking opponentssince war is a conflict between two sides. Without adversaries, who will wefight against? In Business, we also need rivals to make a competition. When youinvest in a certain business, there are many other people who have invested inthe same business and willing to earn profits from it too. Actually, we gainbenefits from our opponents, trying to take the lead in every situation.
· The third component is “TOOL”. In war, we really need weapons (guns, bullets,bombs, tanks, etc.), tactics and soldiers to win. Just like using weapons in thebattle, while you are in a business transaction, you seriously need to have goodskills, intelligence, human resource, services, etc. in order to vanquish yourrivals and achieve your goal(s).· The fourth one is CHEAT. In a war, you need some ruse so as to defeat yourenemy.
It is the same situation in business. Sometimes business ask you to makeguile but only when it is necessary. You cannot always be fair in business otherwiseyou will lose. · The last but not least, it is SUCCESS AND FAILURE. These two are integralin any war and business.
No one has the victory at the first time. Go throughmany battles to win the victory, take the ideal lands as the goal set. Businessmenalso have to lose in many deal to become successful and finally achieve thegoal of holding a large market share for years.