Slapstick Humor

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Simon Critchley described humor as being “produced by a disjunction between the way things are and the way they are represented in the joke, between expectation and actuality” (Critchley, 2004, p.1) Meaning, the audience expects one thing and another is said; the audiences disappointed expectation makes them laugh. (Critchley, 2004, p.1) The most common types of jokes are often the result of disappointed expectation. That being said, there are many different types of humor as it varies from country to country because humor is subjective—what a particular audience finds humorous varies immensely by factors such as upbringing, age, as well as social and cultural experiences. Oscar Wilde, a famous Irish writer, once said, “It is clear that humour …show more content…
Two major subcategories of comedy that are regularly found in American humor are slapstick and sarcasm. Slapstick humor can be described as broad comedy characterized by animated actions; it is very visual and physical. There are many examples of American comedians that use slapstick humor such as “The Three Stooges” from the early to the mid-twentieth century or more recently the “Jackass” crew. Both had Americans laughing at pranks and relatively harmless jokes at the expense of others misfortune. Sarcastic humor is usually a witty response to an action or statement that is considered stupid or wrong; it is used with the intention to hurt feelings. Many American comedians use sarcasm in their humor; two major comedians that were dubbed the ‘King and Queen of Sarcasm’ are Bill Murry and the late Joan Rivers (Trott, 2014); because they continuously used sarcasm in their ‘Stand Up’ and ‘Television’ shows. Both slapstick and sarcasm are clear examples of humor. American humor can sometimes be more direct humor in order to be understood by the size and demographic of the large, American population as well as more censored and less dry as to not offend

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