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The study of metaphor is important for understanding the creative use of language. When we narrate stories metaphor is often how we bring what we are saying to life. Metaphor also helps us cope with complexity. Business writers utilize metaphor to make economic concepts more accessible. Enriching your writing with metaphors is an interesting process to go through and well worth the adventure.
The central role metaphor plays in our lives is highlighted by recent discoveries by psychologists. Apparently, metaphor influences us in surprising and hidden ways because, as this article from the Bosten Globe points out, we think metaphorically most of the time (text version).
Finally here is my favorite quote relating metaphor to narative:
“The art of the narrative is one of the strongest threads running through our society and culture, and is in many respects one of the defining traits of humanity. ‘The story’ is more than just a recitation of facts or assertions (whether real or otherwise). A good story is experiential. It puts each of us as listeners into the narrator’s world and frame of mind, let’s us live, vicariously, through the experiences that the narrator had or conceived. In many cases we identify with the protagonist, whether the story is an epic fantasy journey through lost worlds, a sports article talking about the clash between two rival football teams, or the reportage of a major political event. We read meaning into these narratives at many level, from the bald statement of fact to the subtle interplay of analysis, implication, innuendo and metaphor, and it is the richness of these metaphors that give meaning to the work.” (Kurt Cagle – DevX)