Putting the notion of “domain” back into metonymy

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This chapter explores the role that domains play in conceptual metonymy by examining the semantics of metonymical (and metaphorical) noun–noun compounds. It argues that the concept of “domain” is a necessary feature of any definition of metonymy (irrespective of the fact whether “domain” is referred to as a domain matrix, frame, or icm). The analysis of noun–noun compounds, such as couch potato and scarlet-collar worker, imply that the domains are best understood as networks of semantic associations, with links to further semantic domains or even other grammatical constructions. Therefore, the chapter proposes that metonymy operates within a domain network, where the domains form web-like semantic links of associations.


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