Metaphor and Editorial Positioning in the Stock Market Crash of 2008

Organicist vs. Mechanicist Visions

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The stock market crash of 2008, or "Black Week" at the New York Stock Exchange, was the start of what was to become the most significant international economic disaster since the Great Depression. The subject of this book is how the events at the New York Stock Exchange were reported on by significant online United States news sources using metaphor and to what extent their uses of metaphor were consistent with their general ideological positioning. More than thirty years of research in Cognitive Linguistics has explored how using metaphor in the media can influence not only the beliefs and attitudes of news consumers, but also the financial choices they make as a result, particularly in crisis scenarios. The findings of this research demonstrate a statistically significant preference in the sample of most "liberal" news sources for animate-biological metaphors which promote understanding of the stock market in terms of a living being that must be ‘nurtured’ through intervention as opposed to being ‘left alone’, which reflects more "conservative" or laissez-faire approaches to ameliorating market crisis scenarios.


Michael O'Mara Shimek


Michael O’Mara Shimek, PhD, is a Full-time Lecturer in the Writing Program at Boston University and researches the intersection of Cognitive Linguistics and Ethics in the media. He has explored how metaphor related phenomena can be used to improve the accuracy and trustworthiness of financial news media reporting in market crisis scenarios.

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Editorial Académica Española


metaphor, stock market, ideology, metaphor ontology, Digital media

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