Metaphors We Live By

How your brain uses metaphor to understand the world

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Brett GoldsteinHunter@thatguybg · Corp Dev, Google
One of the most mind-blowing books I've ever read, hands-down. This book by George Lakoff, a renowned linguist, presents some groundbreaking thinking around conceptual metaphor theory. The central thesis is that there is no such thing as purely abstract thought, and that all thought is a metaphor for or derivative of metaphors some physical phenomenon. While there is little to no mention of UI/UX or tech in general in this book, I have found it to be immensely useful in designing experiences starting from first principles. If you have ever wondered why skeuomorphism was a thing and will always be a thing, this book is for you. Description on Amazon: The now-classic Metaphors We Live By changed our understanding of metaphor and its role in language and the mind. Metaphor, the authors explain, is a fundamental mechanism of mind, one that allows us to use what we know about our physical and social experience to provide understanding of countless other subjects. Because such metaphors structure our most basic understandings of our experience, they are "metaphors we live by"-metaphors that can shape our perceptions and actions without our ever noticing them.