Sunday, December 11, 2016

Quote of the Day

One characteristic of good metaphors is the contrast between prior, literal interpretation and the posterior metaphoric interpretation. Metaphors that are too transparent are uninteresting; obscure metaphors are interpretable. A good metaphor is like a good detective story. The solution shouldn't be apparent to maintain the reader's interest, yet it should seem plausible after the fact to maintain the coherence of the story. Consider the smile, "An essay is like a fish." At first the statement is puzzling. An essay is not expected to be fishy, slippery or wet. The puzzle is resolved when we recall that (like a fish) an essay has a head and a body , and it occasionally ends with a flip of the tail.

- Amos, Tversky, Features of Similarity

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