Den religiøse klimametafor

Sara Kamna Rested Suri, Helena Marie Novak, Nina Birgit Pratt, Ida Marie Kold & Josefine Amalie Melchior Christiansen

Studenteropgave: Basisprojekt


This paper explores the way Danish linguaculture understands climate through metaphors. Specifically, this paper looks at metaphors surrounding climate which draw their concepts from religion. The thesis question is: 'in what way is climate talked about in Danish linguaculture and why do we utilise religious words to understand climate in an otherwise relatively secular linguaculture?'

We found that climate is talked about in a variety of metaphors in Danish linguaculture. Through a mapping analysis of specific and systematically collected metaphorical linguistic expressions, we conclude that a conceptual metaphor exists, which is as follows: climate = religion.
Our analysis is based on Zóltan Kövecses' metaphor theory.

This conceptual metaphor has the affordance of offering a critical language. The utilisation of religious language to understand climate opens up a possibility to criticise moral absolutism, elitism, exclusion of others who do not live up to the standards, and hypocrisy in the climate movement. These all mirror things religion is often criticised of. Usage of religious language outside of religious contexts often carries a negative connotation in Danish linguaculture, since Denmark is a secular linguaculture.

Within climate metaphors, negative religious concepts are more prevalent (sinner, hell, devil, etc.) and positive religious concepts (holy, saint, preaching, etc.) are used in a way that implies sarcasm, distance, and irony. Within the climate movement there is a segregation between different approaches and attitudes, and the conceptual metaphor ‘climate = religion’ is utilised by one party to demean and invalidate those whose approach they disagree with or deem counter-productive for the cause.

To further exemplify this point, we analyse a specific article by Signe Munk. The analysis is partially based on Laclau and Mouffe's discourse theory, and we conclude that the article's nodal point is 'klimakamp'. The same word functions as an antagonistic pair as well, where two antagonistic chains of signifiers are connected to the same nodal point.

Based on our analysis, we argue that climate movements take on a similar status mimicking religion and its status as a grand narrative, a term coined by Jean-François Lyotard.

UddannelserBasis - Humanistisk Bacheloruddannelse, (Bachelor uddannelse) Basis
Udgivelsesdato27 maj 2019
Antal sider50
VejledereCarsten Levisen


  • mappinganalyse
  • metaforik
  • metaforanalyse
  • sprogkultur
  • klima
  • klimasprog
  • ordkomposita
  • diskursanalyse
  • religiøse metaforer