The entry first delineates the related but distinct notions of sexuality and sexual identity before giving a brief overview of the main tenets of conceptual metaphor theory. The two core sections discuss metaphors used to think and talk about sexuality—as comprising desire, (potential) partners, and activity—and sexual identity, that is, a facet of identity that is based on sexuality. Evidence comes mostly from varieties of English, but also includes examples from other European, East Asian and Central/East African languages. The entry closes by pointing out the functions of metaphor use in discourse.
Metaphor, sexuality and
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