Metaphor in analytic philosophyIn the Anglo-American tradition of analytic philosophy, in particular, the philosophy of language, metaphor has attracted interest because it does not conform to accepted truth-conditional semantics, the conditions which determine whether or not a statement is true. Taken literally, the statement 'Juliet is the sun' (from Romeo and Juliet) is false, if not nonsensical, yet, taken metaphorically, it is meaningful and may be true, but in a sense which is far from clear. The comparison theory of metaphor asserts that the truth value of a metaphor can be expressed by listing all the respects in which the two terms are alike or similar, for example, Juliet is like the sun because she shares with it qualities such as radiance, brilliance, the fact that she makes the day and that she gets up every morning. However, this results in metaphor being recast as simile. Because it can only explain the truth of metaphor by in effect losing metaphor, the comparison theory is rarely defended.
In contrast, two leading theorists emphasize the fact that truth conditions cannot be specified for a metaphor. Max Black maintains that metaphors are too open-ended to be able to function as referring expressions, and so cannot be expressions which have truth conditions
The idea that metaphor actually creates insight or new meaning is developed by Black .
In a different, naturalist, approach some English speaking philosophers close to cognitive science have made metaphor the central aspect of human rationality, such as Lakoff.