Re: Humor Across Cultures

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Posted by Alan Nagel on March 18, 1999 at 09:21:32:

In Reply to: Re: Humor Across Cultures posted by Steve Price on March 17, 1999 at 06:04:40:

"humor in art from another culture may not be the creator's intent . [and we respond respond] in [our] cultural context (how could it be otherwise?), while absorbing some elements of the foreign culture at the same time.

Right on target John and Steve. And perhaps distinguishing "laughing at" from "laughing with" might help here. The realistic details that violates our taboos surely invites ridicule: that's part of its status as proscribed. But to celebrate and laugh with the visual absurdity of erections and at the same time get a giggle out their biological functions in having gotten [most of] us here and bringing out [most of] our progeny allows absorbing and joining the other culture.

Freud (and others) remind us that all humor has aggression in it: aggression and celebration turn easily into each other.


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