On the Study of Death Euphemism from the Perspective of Blending Theory

Abstract: Most people in many societies throughout history have found it difficult in many circumstances to refer directly, for example, death and dying. But such topics must from time to time be addressed, however much we might prefer to avoid them. This is the role of death euphemism in such circumstances. Euphemism, including death euphemism, is in a constant state of flux. This flux of euphemism is, to a large extent, governed basically by two rules: Gresham’s Law of Language and the Law of Succession. Blending theory, initially originated by Fauconnier, can show us a clear comparison and contrast between Chinese and English death euphemism by its great explanatory power. This paper mainly tries to show the similarities and differences between Chinese and English death euphemism as well as the cultural, religious, geographical, historical, etc. reasons behind this contrast and the unique persuasive power of blending theory. In addition, the writer would advise more work be done in this way to practice in cross-cultural communications and other related areas…
Key words: English Syllables; Chinese Syllables; Contrastive Study; Differences; Characteristics

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