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Statistical modelling of metaphor

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Tamara Polajnar.

Besides making our thoughts more vivid and filling our communication with richer imagery, metaphor plays a fundamental structural role in our cognition, helping us organise and project knowledge. For example, when we say “a well-oiled political machine”, we view the concept of political system in terms of a mechanism and transfer inferences from the domain of mechanisms onto our reasoning about political processes. Highly frequent in text, metaphorical language represents a significant challenge for natural language processing (NLP) systems; and large-scale, robust and accurate metaphor processing tools are needed to improve the overall quality of semantic interpretation in today’s language technology. In this talk I will introduce statistical models of metaphor identification and interpretation and discuss how statistical techniques can be applied to identify patterns of the use of metaphor in linguistic data and to generalize its higher-level mechanisms from text.

This talk is part of the NLIP Seminar Series series.

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