Volume 10, Issue 3
  • ISSN 1018-2101
  • E-ISSN: 2406-4238


This paper is a corpus based study of the cultural meaning of figuration in the Malay lexicon. Initially, polysemy is examined for evidence of figurative conceptualisation at the single word level for two body part terms, ‘the eye’ and ‘the foot /leg’. Compound forms are then examined to identify the extent to which similar conceptualisations are found. Finally, figurative phraseological units are examined for figurative conceptualisations. We consider the relationship between figurative meaning at the phraseological and lexical levels. The identification of figurative language is made with reference to dictionaries and its saliency is gauged with reference to a corpus of contemporary Malay.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Cameron, L. & G. Low
    (1999) Researching and Applying Metaphor. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9781139524704
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139524704 [Google Scholar]
  2. Charteris-Black, J.
    (1995a) Proverbs in communication Journal of Multilingual Multicultural Development 16.4: 259–268.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Firth, J.R.
    (1957) Papers in Linguistics: 1934–1951. London: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Gibbs, R. W.
    (1994) The Poetics of Mind: Figurative Thought, Language and Understanding. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Goddard, C.
    (1997) Cultural values and ‘ cultural scripts ‘ of Malay (Bahasa Melayu). Journal of Pragmatics27: 183–201. doi: 10.1016/S0378‑2166(96)00032‑X
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-2166(96)00032-X [Google Scholar]
  6. Goddard, C. & A. Wierzbicka
    (1994) (eds.)Semantic and lexical universals: Theory and empirical findings. Amsterdam: Benjamins. doi: 10.1075/slcs.25
    https://doi.org/10.1075/slcs.25 [Google Scholar]
  7. Hasan Muhamed Ali
    (1996) Malay Idioms. Singapore & Kuala Lumpur: Times Books International.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Halliday M.A.K.
    (1985) An Introduction to Functional Grammar. London: Arnold.
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Heah Lee Hsia, C.
    (1989) The Influence of English on the Lexical Expansion of Bahasa Malaysia. Kuala Lumpur: Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka.
    [Google Scholar]
  10. Hodge, R. & G. Kress
    (1979) Language as Ideology. London & New York: Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Kamus Dewan Edisi Ketiga
    (1995) Kuala Lumpur: Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka. Lakoff, G & M. Johnson (1980) Metaphors We Live By. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Lakoff, G. & M. Turner
    (1989) More than Cool Reason: A Field Guide to Poetic Metaphor. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. doi: 10.7208/chicago/9780226470986.001.0001
    https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226470986.001.0001 [Google Scholar]
  13. Masri, S.
    (1997) Simpulan Bahasa Melayu. Shah Alam: Perbit Faja Bakti Sdn. Bhd..
    [Google Scholar]
  14. Moon, R.
    (1992) Textual aspects of fixed expressions in learners dictionaries’. In. P.J.L Arnaud . & H. Bejoint (eds.), Vocabulary and Applied Linguistics. Basingstoke: Macmillan Academic & Professional Ltd., pp.13–27.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. (1994) The analysis of fixed expressions in text. In M. Coulthard (ed.), Advances in Written Discourse Analysis. London: Routledge, pp.117–135.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. (1998) Fixed Expressions and Idioms in English. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Quinn, N.
    (1991) The cultural basis of metaphor. In J.W. Fernandez (ed.), Beyond Metaphor: The Theory of Tropes in Anthropology. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. Stubbs, M.
    (1996) Text and Corpus Analysis. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Sweetser, E.
    (1987) Metaphorical models of thought and speech: A comparison of historical directions and metaphorical mappings. Proceedings of 13th annual meeting Berkeley Linguistic Society. Berkeley: Berkeley Linguistics Society.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. (1990) From Etymology to Pragmatics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9780511620904
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511620904 [Google Scholar]
  21. Teliya, V. , N. Bragina , E. Oparina & I. Sandomirskaya
    (1998) Phraseology as a language of culture: Its role in the representation of a collective mentality. In A.P. Cowie (ed.), Phraseology. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. Tham Seong Chee
    (1990) A Study of the Evolution of the Malay Language. Singapore: Singapore University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Wierzbicka, A.
    (1972) Semantic Primitives. Frankfurt: Athenäum.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. (1980) Lingua Mentalis: The semantics of natural language. New York: Academic Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  25. (1992) Semantics, Culture and Cognition. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. (1996) Semantics: Primes and Universals. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Zainal Abidin Safarwan
    (1995) Kamus Besar Bahasa Melayu. Kuala Lumpur: Utusan Publications.
    [Google Scholar]
  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Corpus Analysis; Figurative language; Lexicon; Malay
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error