Metaphor and Gestalt: Interaction Theory Revisited

Joseph Glicksohn, Chanita Goodblatt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Discusses the relationship between the interaction theory of metaphor and Gestalt psychology. Interaction theory views the metaphor as a whole (gestalt), created by an interaction between its primary and secondary subjects. Moreover, the interaction theory is seen to require a full contextual analysis of the poetic metaphor embedded within its poetic text. The authors illustrate this Gestalt-interaction approach by focusing on a particularly complex poetic text having multiple metaphors (Dylan Thomas's Sonnet VII, from his 'Altarwise by Owl-Light' sequence). A representation employing primary semantic fields clarifies the underlying structure of the metaphor chain comprising the text. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)
Original languageEnglish GB
Pages (from-to)83-97
Number of pages15
JournalPoetics Today
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 1993


  • Contextual Associations
  • Gestalt Psychology
  • Metaphor
  • Poetry
  • Theoretical Interpretation


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