Cover: The Point of Words in PAPERBACK

The Point of Words

Children’s Understanding of Metaphor and Irony

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Product Details


$33.50 • £26.95 • €30.00

ISBN 9780674681262

Publication Date: 03/25/1997


224 pages

6 x 9 inches


A rich book that addresses important issues. Winner is right that nonliteral language reflects a pervasive human ability, and revealing the bases and development of metaphor and irony displays fundamental aspects of human cognition.Contemporary Psychology

A wonderful overview of the important issues and empirical findings on children’s understanding of metaphor and irony… The Point of Words should most certainly pique the interest of many child language researchers, and I recommend it to all students of figurative language.—Raymond W. Gibbs, Jr., Child Language

A cogently argued book and one that also provides an accessible…introduction to what is likely to become an increasingly important topic in developmental psycholinguistics.—Alan Garnham, Child Language Teaching and Therapy

This is a comprehensive and closely argued examination of two features of children’s language acquisition; metaphor and irony… Accessible to the lay reader, the well-referenced text, with an extensive bibliography, makes the book a useful introduction to the development of language in children.National Literacy Trust, 1997 Bibliography [UK]

This is a deep and beautiful book about the developmental roots of irony and metaphor.—Roger Brown

Through a judicious blend of sound theory, anecdotal report and experimental evidence, Winner manages to turn soft cognition into hard science.—David R. Olson

Ellen Winner’s insights into the development of metaphor and irony add immensely to our understanding of children and provide a richer appreciation of language’s richest forms.—Jerome Kagan

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