Ideational Grammatical Metaphor in Merry Shelly’s Frankenstein and its Cinematic Adaptation

Document Type: Research Paper


Department of English, Tabriz Branch, Islamic Azad University , Tabriz, Iran


Within Systemic Functional Linguistics, Grammatical Metaphor (GM) is a meaning-making resource lying at the experiential level that extends the meaning potential through cross-stratal re-mappings between the grammar and the semantics, boiling down, in one of its manifestations to expressing something that should have been a process (verb) in terms of a thing (noun). This study is an attempt at seeing how the frequency of GM used in the novel ‘Frankenstein’ written by Mary Shelly plays out in its cinematic adaptation. It is an attempt at investigating possible differences in the use of GM in the novel as a type of literary prose fiction and in one of its cinematic adaptations, the respective frequencies, along with what implications these differences carry in terms of generic features and functions of GM. In the 4200-word corpus analyzed for the movie adaptation, there were 70 instances of GM emerging upon analysis. In the 4200-word purposively sampled excerpt of the novel, there were above 330 instances of GM emerging. So the frequency of instances of GM in the written version was much more than that in the cinematic adaptation. This significant difference carries many possible cognitive, semantic, discursive, generic and textual implications. A number of pedagogical implications accrue to this research, such as increasing the knowledge of teachers and English language instructors with regard to the role of GM in making metaphorical forms in different texts, increasing knowledge of how to approach the teaching of the skill of reading and writing in upper-intermediate and intermediate classes, deeper critical reading abilities for learners, etc. 


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