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  • LREC-2020-Paper-final

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Metaphorical Expressions in Automatic Arabic Sentiment Analysis

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Abstract

Over the recent years, Arabic language resources and NLP tools have been under rapid development. One of the important tasks for Arabic natural language processing is the sentiment analysis. While a significant improvement has been achieved in this research area, the existing computational models and tools still suffer from the lack of capability of dealing with Arabic metaphorical expressions.
Metaphors have an important role in Arabic language due to its unique history and culture. Metaphors provide a linguistic mechanism for expressing ideas and notions that can be different from their surface form. Therefore, in order to efficiently identify true sentiment of Arabic language data, a computational model needs to be able to “read between lines”. In this paper, we examine the issue of metaphors in automatic Arabic sentiment analysis by carrying out an experiment, in which we observe the performance of a state-of-art Arabic sentiment tool on metaphors and analyse the result to gain a deeper insight into the issue. Our experiment evidently shows that metaphors have a significant impact on the performance of current Arabic sentiment tools, and hence it is an important task to develop Arabic language resources and computational models for Arabic metaphors.