Of Zebra Doves and Prawn Crackers: Javanese Metaphors for Vocal Types

Marc Benamou


Both the English and Javanese' languages describe music largely in metaphoric terms. In English, for instance, we use the spatial metaphor "up" and "down" to refer to differences in pitch. In Javanese these same differences are described as
"small" and "large," respectively. The linguist George Lakoff and the philosopher Mark Johnson, in their stimulating book, Metaphors We Live By, have shown how metaphors are a basic component of any conceptual system.

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