Philosophy of Laughter and Humor

ISBN-10: 0887063276
ISBN-13: 9780887063275
Edition: N/A
Authors: John Morreall
List price: $33.95 Buy it from $12.94
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Description: This book assesses the adequacy of the traditional theories of laughter and humor, suggests revised theories, and explores such areas as the aesthetics and ethics of humor, and the relation of amusement to other mental states.Theories of laughter  More...

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Book details

List price: $33.95
Publisher: State University of New York Press
Publication date: 12/5/1986
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 285
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.25" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.144
Language: English

This book assesses the adequacy of the traditional theories of laughter and humor, suggests revised theories, and explores such areas as the aesthetics and ethics of humor, and the relation of amusement to other mental states.Theories of laughter and humor originated in ancient times with the view that laughter is an expression of feelings of superiority over another person. This superiority theory was held by Plato, Aristotle, and Hobbes. Another aspect of laughter, noted by Aristotle and Cicero and neglected until Kant and Schopenhauer developed it into the incongruity theory, is that laughter is often a reaction to the perception of some incongruity. According to the third and latest traditional theory, the relief theory of Herbert Spencer and Freud, laughter is the venting of superfluous nervous energy. Historical examples of all these theories are presented along with hybrid theories such as those of Descartes and Bergson. The book also features traditional explorations of the place of humor in aesthetics, drama, and literature.This is the first work in the last fifty years to include the classic sources in the philosophy of humor and the first to present theories by contemporary philosophers.

#60;b#62;John Morreall's#60;/b#62; previous publications include #60;i#62;Taking Laughter Seriously#60;/i#62; (1983); #60;i#62;The Philosophy of Laughter and Humor#60;/i#62; (1987); #60;i#62;Humor Works#60;/i#62; (1997); and #60;i#62;Comedy, Tragedy, and Religion#60;/i#62; (1999). In 2004 and 2005, he was elected President of the International Society for Humor Studies. His work has been featured in the #60;i#62;New York Times#60;/i#62;, the #60;i#62;Washington Post#60;/i#62;, and the #60;i#62;Economist#60;/i#62;.

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