Call for Papers MetFest 17


Amsterdam, 31 August – 2 September 2017

The Metaphor Lab Amsterdam is delighted to announce that the next Metaphor Festival will take place in Amsterdam from 31 August through 2 September 2017, with Alan Cienki (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam & Moscow State Linguistic University) and Kathleen Ahrens (Hong Kong Polytechnic University) as this years’ keynote speakers.

The Metaphor Festival is an annual conference on the use of figurative language and other modes of figurative expression. It used to be arranged by the Department of English at Stockholm University. From 2006 through 2015, a series of ten successful conferences was held in Stockholm bringing together researchers from a broad range of academic disciplines, working within different theoretical and methodological paradigms in a creative, internationally oriented, and friendly atmosphere. The Metaphor Lab Amsterdam continues this tradition and last year’s first Metaphor Festival in Amsterdam was a great success.

The importance of figurative language and figurative semiotics is now generally recognized, and the Festival offers an opportunity to present and learn about research findings concerning figurative uses in different types of human communication, and their cognitive, cultural, narrative, poetic, rhetorical, social, textual or discourse functions and effects. Contributions to the general session of the Festival can address the linguistic and/or literary character and use of tropes—metaphor, metonymy, simile, oxymoron, hyperbole, litotes, punning, and irony—or the character and use of rhyme schemes, various types of parallelism and other formal poetic constructions, as well as the nature of figurative signs and devices in multi-modal or non-verbal communication.

The combination of metaphor and Amsterdam in a festival has prompted the Metaphor Lab Amsterdam to celebrate this configuration in one new way: after two days of academic work on August 31 and September 1, Saturday 2 September will be different. We are thinking of organizing metaphor slams (deliberate metaphor production; resistance to metaphor battle; debating by metaphor contest), outreach activities to the non-academic community and metaphor-related artistic performances.


Abstracts should be 400 words maximum and should be written in English (please provide glosses or translations for examples in other languages).

Abstracts reporting on empirical data should have four sections: introduction, methods, findings, and conclusions. Abstracts comprising a purely theoretical or philosophical contribution should have three sections: introduction, main argument, and conclusions.

All abstracts should end with a one-sentence take-home-message. Authors need to make sure that their identities cannot be retrieved from the abstract itself, and should include blind reference to their work that is not yet publicly available (i.e., papers in press, under review and. or in preparation).



At the Metaphor Festival, we will award the second Christina Alm Arvius-award for the best presentation by a student (BSc, MSc or PhD). Please indicate during the registration process whether your presentation fits these requirements and whether you would like to be considered for the award.