Memoirs of Life in South Africa

English 162: Literature and Place (A Queens College Study Abroad Course)

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Blog 10- The use of humor

January 28th, 2012 by Talisa Feliciano · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

Humorous subjects are often those that people feel uncomfortable talking about.  Topics can often include politics, social tensions, and racial tensions among other things.  Successful humor depends on the context.  If a comedian is speaking about an unfavorable politician, for example, it is important that the audiences/viewers understand the political situation.  In this way humor is often a successful and lasting form of political protest.  It is successful because at certain times political protest may not be an open option available to everyone in society.  However, once something is comical the ideas may spread more.  They tend to stick in the minds of the audience more.  Unlike politics, humor is far more available to people who do not have the means to openly say to a listening public that something is unjust.  Humor is an extremely accessible means to protest because it presents itself in many forms.  Humor is not just the domain of comedians.  Anyone can use it from the form of jokes, to comic strip writers, to sitcoms, to plays, to books, to movies, to youtube.  The access of technology to more and more people has allowed more and more people to express themselves in a humorous way.

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