Käsitemetaforan näkökulma pelimusiikin henkilökohtaiseen merkityksellisyyteen


  • Oskari Koskela
  • Heli Tissari
  • Kai Tuuri


The perspective of conceptual metaphor on personal meaningfulness of game music

The use of metaphors is prevalent when talking about music in everyday life as well as in more professional contexts. As such, the role of metaphors in describing and understanding music has been a topic for philosophical discussions and more recently also for empirical research. While most of the focus has traditionally been on the meaning of music, in this article we consider metaphors as related to the personal meaningfulness of music. More specifically, we investigate metaphoric expressions in personal narratives of fond game music memories, aiming to understand what the metaphors tell about the relationship between music and the listener. Following the theory of conceptual metaphor, we treat metaphors not as merely rhetorical figures of speech but as a pervasive feature of human meaning-making, that is, as related to the way we understand abstract things by conceptually mapping our understanding of concrete things. 

Our data is a set of 183 Finnish stories about personally meaningful memories with game music. We analysed the data in several steps, starting with the identification of metaphoric expressions and their source domains, followed by reducing them to their image schematic structures. Finally, we used the image schematic structures to organise the metaphors into 8 wider categories: Agency, Force, Spatial relations, Transfer, Mediator, Linkage, Tangible thing/object and Sensation. Besides presenting these categories as outlining different aspects of how the listeners’ conceptualise the personal meaningfulness of game music, we discuss the theory of conceptual metaphor as a viable approach for understanding musical experiences more generally.


Koskela, O., Tissari, H., & Tuuri, K. (2022). Käsitemetaforan näkökulma pelimusiikin henkilökohtaiseen merkityksellisyyteen. Musiikki, 52(4). https://doi.org/10.51816/musiikki.125643