DonÂ´t really know if this is the right place for this, but somehow the lifestyle section didnÂ´t seem to fit as well...
Recently my girlfriend stumbled over a book tip from Amazon with a title that set off a chain reaction of thinking in me. The book title is in German:
"Ihr Pferd ist tot? Steigen Sie ab!: Wie Sie sich die innere Freiheit nehmen, beruflich umzusatteln"
It means something along these lines: "Your horse is dead? Dismount! How to take the inner liberty to reorientate jobwise." (Umsatteln literally means to change saddles...)
Anyway, the title is quite horrible and the example is not even a very good one, but it shows something that I thought about often times. In German there are plenty of phrases and figures of speech involving riding or horses. Some are so common for me that the real meaning or origin only occured to me because of my recent involvement with horses. When I thought more about horses in everyday language, I realized that very often it displays an image of aggression against the horse. Understandable since most phrases come from a time when mistreating a horse was common. But I think that using these phrases (and I think of newscasters here) influences the public image of the horse in our society to the worse.
I can only speak of German though, not sure if itÂ´s the same way in English (flogging a dead horse comes to mind
) or other languages. Maybe itÂ´s just me, but at the moment I canÂ´t think about really positive phrases... If there arenÂ´t, maybe we should start planting some nice ones!
Here are some quick examples from German:
"Man muss ihn an die Kandare nehmen." ~ you have to put a curb bit on someone
"jemandem die Sporen geben" ~ to spur someone
EDIT: Ok, now I did a bit more research about German phrases and it seems there are a lot of positive or at least neutral ones. But IÂ´m not familiar with most of them
Maybe it is just my paranoia after all...