Mo Yan’s Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out: A Conceptual Integration Analysis

Omid Akhavan, Esmaeil Zohdi


Cognitive linguistics is a modern school of linguistic thought that originated in the late seventies out of the work of a number of researchers who were interested in the relation of language and mind. It is a new linguistic paradigm which sees language not as an independent, self-sufficient system but as an instrument for organizing, processing, and conveying information. Recent studies and investigations in the field of cognitive linguistics have increased the range of possibilities for linguistic research regarding language and culture. Conceptual Integration Theory, proposed by Gilles Fauconnier and Mark Turner (2002), is a further development of this line of research. It is a basic mental operation which is central to human thought, imagination, and the way we think. Conceptual integration performs an important role in construction of meaning in everyday life, in science, and even in literature. Mo Yan’s Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out (2006) is a historical fiction exploring China’s development during the latter half of the twentieth century. The author himself asserts that the novel encapsulates his writing styles and reflects his exploration in the arts of novel writing. The present study examined the Conceptual Integration Theory in Mo Yan’s Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out. It also demonstrated the way the author made use of personification and conceptual blending in order to create a satirical atmosphere and to criticize totalitarian states.



Cognitive Linguistics, Conceptual Integration Theory, Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out, Mo Yan

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