“The tower young from afar”: Conceptual metaphors and their extensionsin the poem “Gradačac” by Milorad Pejić


  • Vedad Spahic Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Tuzla
  • Indira Sabic Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Tuzla


cognitive linguistics, conceptual metaphor, conceptual integration, interpretation, poetry, culture, identity


The paper analyzes the role of conceptual metaphor and conceptual integration in the poetic discourse of the poem ”Gradačac” by the Bosnian-Herzegovinian author Milorad Pejić. The analysis focuses on innovative language expressions and the rhymes are approached by the cognitive-linguistic and the literaryinterpretational point of view. Cognitive mechanisms, on which vivid metaphors are based on, are established and described. The interpretation recognizes the cultural dependency of metaphorical concepts and vivid expressions as their extensions; it follows the reconfiguration of the concepts throughout history and their modern perception from the aspect of cognitive linguistics, literary creation/interpretation and reality in general. The analysis of the samples determined two key metaphorical concepts: control is up and risk is on the ground level' (or lack of control is down), which can be classified as the so called orientational metaphors, as well as the concepts: importance is big, importance/status is high, theories are buildings, good is white /shiny and bad is dark/black. The analysis additionally reached the inversion of the conceptual model good is up, into bad is up which is noted in the wider context and the historical reality as the embodiment of the Lakoff Johnson thesis based on which the truth is more of an understanding rather than a fact. A metaphor is, indeed, an efficien tool of understanding, thanks to the mechanism of conceptual integration. In conclusion, the analysis showed the entrenchment of the innovative poetic discourse of Pejić’s song in cognitive, cultural and historical changes of its home region.