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Metaphor of war - Essay Example

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In his column published in New York Times, on March 23, 2003, Dave Anderson, elaborates the language of sports to be jargoned with the metaphor of war. Tyronn Lue was just caught on tape; on being asked about the impending war with Iraq, the Wizards' guard replied he felt remorseful for each person who had to struggle for their families and friends…
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Metaphor of War In his column published in New York Times, on March 23, 2003, Dave Anderson, elaborates the language of sports to be jargoned with the metaphor of war. Tyronn Lue was just caught on tape; on being asked about the impending war with Iraq, the Wizards' guard replied he felt remorseful for each person who had to struggle for their families and friends. "We have a war to fight, too - the Washington Wizards are trying to make the playoffs."
As sports aficionados - athletes, reporters- need change their concepts, and without it, it's not difficult to crash into trap of speedy connections. The obvious relations between war and sport are even more entrenched for athletes and coaches than for the media; war metaphors are pleasant and convincing. In the wake of Sept. 11, football players promised to hold their tongues. This stuck around for about three days. Then they once again embarked upon the entire buzz once again about wars, trenches, bombs, warriors, field generals and so on. The vernacular of sport and war have cross-fertilized to the peak of looking ineluctably matted. There is much shared language between sport and politics, too - elections as horse races and Heisman drives - but comparisons drawn between sport and war seem much more out of place.
On the same line, in his column published in New York Times, on May 13, 2001 Kristin Hohenadel discusses the increasing terminology of war in movies and then says that movies are like war, quoting Dustin Hoffman on the Oscar night ''It's like a war". Everything, such as conceptualizing, producing, directing a movie is like a war. As Spielberg once said, ''In war, as in movies, every decision is about saving the wrong decision from being made.'' In addition, these movies don't lessen the real war that is going on. It is an ongoing process and even a happy ending of a war movie does not imply it will be the same in real. Conversely, it even stimulates people to watch a war movie and if it makes them happy, the wounds left after the war will definitely be healed. We are still wondering if this is a war or live theater airing in our living rooms. Perhaps it's a bit of both. A blurring of the battle lines. Young soldiers heading toward battle while we have seconds of the marinated trout. It was a supper party huge on surrealism.
Understandably, Sontag in her column published for NY Times on September 10, 2002 refers to metaphors as blank, duplicitous phrases, at least as far as they are viewed in the context of the United States. And therefore it was only business as usual that this September 10, as the debate shifted over what to do about Iraq, Susan Sontag should deliver herself of an op-ed snippet called "Real Battles and Empty Metaphors" in The New York Times. According to her, real wars have a star and an end, but the war against terrorism is not a war; instead it is an open-ended "mandate for intensifying the use of American might." She has warned readers time and again about cognitive and moral depredations wreaked by mistaking metaphors for realities. Now she gives us an assurance that, even though "real wars are not metaphors," the war against terrorism is, and "one with great consequences." It's not that she has a predilection for the Taliban or Al Qaeda, you appreciate. She recognizes that they resist "most of what I treasure-including democracy, pluralism, secularism, the parity of the sexes, clean-shaven men, dancing (all kinds), diaphanous and revealing clothing and, well, fun." Well, it's enriching to know that Susan Sontag is in favor of tight-fitting clothes and dancing of all kinds. And we presume it is comforting to know that she does not "question the responsibility of the American government to safeguard the lives of its citizens." But the pragmatic steps our government has taken to do just that-steps which have of late produced rich incentives in arrests of Al Qaeda members in this country and abroad-she regards as "lobotomizing." This is, certainly, a metaphor.
Works Cited
Anderson, D. (2003, March 23). It's Time to Clean Up the War Vocabulary in Sports. New York Times, Late Edition- East Coast, p. 8.11.
Hohenadel, K. (2001, May 13). They Talk War, but They Shoot Movies. New York Times, Late Edition- East coast, p. 2 (Part 2).13.
Sontag, S. (2002, September 10). Real Battles and Empty Metaphors:[Op-Ed]. New York Times, Late Edition- East Coast, p. A.25. Read More
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