Analogies and metaphors and autism - you?



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Sora
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08 Jan 2008, 8:57 am

It's said that autistic people don't get metaphors. But NTs seem to have real problems with analogies. (?)

So, do you have trouble understanding metaphors?
And do you have trouble understanding analogies?

I want some answers from everyone, all kinds of autistic and non-autistic people!


I thought of this since I realised many neurotypicals have trouble to connect two concepts, although they have no trouble imagining a concept into a metaphor. Whereas they realise some highly poetic text means to express 'love', they don't see the striking resemblance of two things that are not connected by their content, but by 'how they work'.

Personally, I'm very good at analogies (I suppose), I see connections all the time and bind concepts together naturally. I use analogies all the time without realising it. I'm horrible at metaphors though, someone else must give me clues as to what they're about.


I thought that analogies are about similarities in the system rather than the content. I don't know about metaphors, but I guess they might just be the other way round?



duncansbass
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08 Jan 2008, 9:38 am

I am fine with both, with the exception that I don't always understand metaphor when its thrown at me. I am perfectly capable of cocking my brain and throwing them out, not always so good at catching them.


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Danielismyname
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08 Jan 2008, 9:49 am

I'm ok with comparing stuff and then drawing conclusions from the same. "Formal" figurative speech and I cannot converse together; we speak two different languages.

I'm not much of a metaphorical linguist compared to finding patterns in stuff, and then noting the differences/similarities between the parts of the patterns I find.



9CatMom
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08 Jan 2008, 9:54 am

I don't have trouble with either. Language related tasks are a source of strength for me.



Reodor_Felgen
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08 Jan 2008, 9:54 am

I like using both, but NTs don't seem to understand them if they get to complicated.


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Last edited by Reodor_Felgen on 08 Jan 2008, 11:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

KingdomOfRats
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08 Jan 2008, 9:58 am

what is analogies and metaphor?
have heard of metaphor before,but don't know meaning of either.


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duncansbass
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08 Jan 2008, 11:17 am

Reodor_Felgen wrote:
I like using both, but NTs don't seem to understand them if they get to complicated.


Hear, hear!


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Prof_Pretorius
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08 Jan 2008, 11:30 am

Analogy: a similarity between like features of two things, on which a comparison may be based: the analogy between the heart and a pump.

Metaphor: A figure of speech in which a word or phrase that ordinarily designates one thing is used to designate another, thus making an implicit comparison, as in "a sea of troubles" or "All the world's a stage" (Shakespeare).

I have no problem with either, but I have always enjoyed reading all sorts of books and thus had to learn what various authors were saying.


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Sora
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08 Jan 2008, 11:35 am

KingdomOfRats wrote:
what is analogies and metaphor?
have heard of metaphor before,but don't know meaning of either.


Brilliant question KoR, I had to think hard on it, because I don't find the explanations to be any easy. I enjoyed coming up with the explanations though and I do think I got it finally right and understandable.

An analogy is when one discovers similarities between two or more different things after comparing them.
The only short example I can think of right now is one taken from biology. Birds and bats have both developed a kind of wings with which they can fly (or glide), but the way these wings are constructed and the way these animals developed them over the course of time is not in any way connected by relation. They just happened to both be put into similar situations at different times in which they had to find a way to fly.

I think it describes analogies well. Two system are the same or just similar - the content most likely differs, because they have different origins. I often compare Karma to a river, because I think they function very alike.


It was fairly hard to figure how to describe a metaphor, but I think I'm correct with the following.

One teacher once told me metaphors are comparison without adding 'like/as'. 'She's as clever as a fox' is a comparison, whereas 'She is a clever fox' is a metaphor.
It is a metaphor when various attributes of one thing (like the fox) are taken to underline attributes that another person (the she) has. By saying the above sentence, the speaker indicates that this person is the same as a fox or has the qualities of one. In short, metaphors (as I know them) mean to express an equality of two things that in the mind of the speaker are alike.

They're often used to put abstract ideas and visions into everyday examples, so that another person can understand it and relate to it. We just read poems on Spring in school and in a fair amount of these poem, the author writes about romantic relationships and lovers to indicate that he or she feels the same towards Spring as he or she feels towards these things.

This doesn't help at all with spotting metaphors though. Least with understanding them. How I am supposed to know what random highly metaphorical poems may mean... I haven't figured that out yet.



Lurv
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08 Jan 2008, 11:36 am

I think I'm able to understand both (although I do get confused by the difference between the two), but I suck at using them myself. I try finding a metaphor or analogy for something, but can rarely come up with anything that really fits what I'm trying to say.



corroonb
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08 Jan 2008, 12:08 pm

I understand both but I don't use them very often in speech. People tend to use them all the time without even realising it. I think reading a lot of books when I was younger helped me with this but I still think and speak in a very literal, pedantic way.



Azharia
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08 Jan 2008, 12:21 pm

I understand both usually. (Am Aspie)

But I do know that there is a good book for those that don't. My mom teaches kids age 6 - 12 with extra needs, and for her Aspies she got it. It's a book with all common Metaphors and a lot of unusual words that people use in the wrong context.

It is worth a read just for it's factual explanations of common swear words. Very funny, but also she finds it very useful. :)



SeaBright
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08 Jan 2008, 1:48 pm

I dont know the difference between the two really and tend to list them both as the same.

Im a hypocrite in that when they are said to me from someone I 'tick'. Most of the time.

I use them myself as sometimes my only form of explaining something.

I dont understand what is being said by others when they do.


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2ukenkerl
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08 Jan 2008, 2:12 pm

I usually understand them both, and use analogies and anecdotes ALL THE TIME! OTHERS get confused more by me than I do of them. Even some of the most confused eventually admit they see the logic.



equinn
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08 Jan 2008, 4:33 pm

Here is some clarification:

http://www.copyblogger.com/metaphor-sim ... ifference/



Last edited by equinn on 09 Jan 2008, 7:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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