Ambivalence of metaphorical thinking in the context of search for senses




metaphor, metaphorical thinking, ambivalence, search for senses, H. Hobbes, J. Locke, K. Marx, «Leviathan», «voice of reason», «capital»


The paper discloses the question of ambivalent character of the metaphor as means of expression of the meaning. The metaphor appears as effective phenomenon in cognitive process. At the same time, in particular philosophical texts the metaphor can reduce the subject of the research and bring self-contradictory meanings. The author’s position consists in the idea that in general the metaphor is not effective means for the practical research, however, the metaphorical argumentation reveals the dual character of social or historical phenomena. The author demonstrates the functioning of the social metaphors with examples of the works of T. Hobbes, J. Locke, K. Marx and shows that they can be reconsidered conceptually in the light of context of the use. Depending on the such context, self-contradiction appears, ambivalence of the metaphorical potential and the meaning of the research phenomenon can appear ambiguous. Using the methods of the analysis and comparison, the author aimed at re-analyzing the metaphor as means of the search and reflection of the sense; reflecting its ambivalent character in cases when it is used in the social or epistemological researches; revealing the dual connotation of the metaphorical argumentation in particular philosophical works.

Generalized results of the paper can be shown by the following statements: 1)The metaphorical meaning of concepts in social, historical, epistemological practice partly replaces the direct meaning and forms further human culture in a trail from deviation to norm. 2) The concepts “Leviathan» (T. Hobbes), “voice of reason” (J. Locke), “capital” (K. Marx) in metaphorical interpretation form ambivalent historical narratives of criteria of the justice, the truth, the social law and in as such form further human culture. 3) The inner potential of the researches connected with the variety of metaphorical uses is especially important to the sphere of socio-philosophical and socio-political searches.

Author Biography

Ganna Stoyatska, Dnipropetrovsk State University of Internal Affairs, Dnipro

Candidate of of Philosophical Sciences, Associate Professor,

Associate Professor of the Department of Philosophy and Political Science


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How to Cite

Stoyatska, G. (2019). Ambivalence of metaphorical thinking in the context of search for senses. Skhid, (1(159), 20–24.



History of Philosophy