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Zoometaphor as a way of perceiving the new coronavirus infection COVID-19


We analyze the perception of new coronavirus infection COVID-19 through an animalistic (zoo) metaphor by representatives of student youth. We conduct an associative experiment in order to identify animalistic metaphorical models “Coronavirus is ...”. We analyze the themes of the received metaphors; we offer the author’s classification of metaphorical models with the sphere-source “animals”; the psychological impact of the coronavirus on the individual is comprehended. The results of the experiment are interpreted on the basis of a phenomenological approach using the methods of questioning, quantitative analysis and document analysis. The resulting metaphors demonstrate the diverse content of the source sphere “animals”; they can be grouped on different grounds (by common features, by national-specific features, by principle of sound and graphic similarity). At the stage of comprehending a new phenomenon in the life of mankind, zoometaphors are actively involved in the formation of a naive and scientific picture of the world, provide material for constructing the image of an “animal” and the relationship “human-animal”.


zoometaphor, animalistic metaphor, coronavirus, COVID-19, perception, associative experiment

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