Perception And Metaphorical Smell: A Malay Manuscript Studies (Petua Membina Rumah) as one of the Asian Texts

Authors: Muhamad Fadzllah Hj Zaini, Anida Sarudin, Siti Saniah Abu Bakar, Mazura @ Mastura Muhammad (Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris, Malaysia)
Speaker: Muhamad Fadzllah Hj Zaini
Topic: Cognitive Anthropology and Language
The (SCOPUS / ISI) SOAS GLOCAL CALA 2020 Colloquium Session

Panel Abstract

Scholars of architecture have recorded sense of smell metaphors in site selection processes of Malay houses. This has been described in several manuscripts within discourses of Tips of Building a Home (Petua Membina Rumah).

This paper analyses smell metaphors using the Conceptual Metaphor Theory (CMT). The theoretical framework is based on a corpus, which generates three sets of manuscript data, namely MSS741, MSS1521 and Tajul Muluk, so to  access the concordance of smell (bau) and its smell (baunya). This paper uses a qualitative study design around a Malay manuscript.

Three main findings emerge from this paper. First, the existence of the metaphor of smell contained in the Malay manuscripts is evidenced. Secondly, the conceptual metaphor is formed according to the domain structures such as smell, sound, touch, taste, vision and spirituality. Third, the metaphor of smell aligns with feeling, which suggests that humans can use the tongue as a sense of smell.

This study thus becomes significant in explaining ways in which the concept of smell is linguistically coded in the Malay Language, and attempts to present elements of Malay wisdom based on the smell metaphors.

Keywords: metaphor, smell, linguistic cod ability, conceptual metaphor theory.