Metaphorical Futures

This paper argues that temporal concepts that appear to involve a relation between an individual and a future event are not, as has often been claimed, directly structured in terms of locations in space and/or motion through space. Instead, the positioning of reified events in space is used to describe the degree of epistemic detachment holding between the individual and the event. This brings metaphorical means of conveying the future into line with recent work on tense and non-metaphorical means. It also shows parallels with the use of epistemic metaphors, such as UNDERSTANDING IS GRASPING, where the reified objects are ideas rather than events.

Keywords: temporal metaphors, ego-reference point, epistemic modality, Aymara


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