Chapter

Humour and value

Noël Carroll

in Humour

Published in print January 2014 | ISBN: 9780199552221
Published online January 2014 | e-ISBN: 9780191779886 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/actrade/9780199552221.003.0004

Series: Very Short Introductions

Humour and value

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‘Humour and value’ concerns the relation of humour to value, specifically in terms of its social functions. Humour, and the comic amusement that attends it, has a crucial role to play in the construction of communities. It can serve as a disseminator as well as an enforcer of norms. But the social function of humour also raises certain moral questions, including: When is humour immoral? Is laughing at immoral humour itself immoral? These questions are especially pressing in our times where judgements of so-called political correctness are rampant and where many contemporary comics seem dedicated to responding to the forces of political correctness by pushing the envelope at an ever-escalating pace.

Keywords: black humour; Max Eastman; Michael Jackson; Jonathan Miller; Philip Sidney; value

Chapter.  13310 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Theory and Cultural Studies ; Theatre ; Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art ; Humour

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