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Understanding Humor through Communication

Why Be Funny, Anyway?

John C. Meyer

Understanding Humor through Communication explores theories of humor origin as well as humor functions in human groups and societies through communication. A model of humor decision by individuals is detailed, followed by humor’s emergence in communication. Elements of humor sources (incongruity, superiority, and relief), humor intent (comic or tragic perspectives), and humor perception (ego-involvement, script awareness, bona-fide messages, and non-bona-fide messages) are incorporated. Persuasive, organizational, and interpersonal settings involving humor are explored in depth to consider its functions. The individual choice to experience humor is detailed in its effects, as are the social implications of widespread humor desired and invoked in human society. Understanding Humor through Communication will appeal to scholars of communication, psychology, and sociology. « less more »
Lexington Books
Pages: 114Size: 6 x 9 1/4
978-1-4985-0316-7 • Hardback • October 2015 • $70.00 • (£47.95)
978-1-4985-0318-1 • Paperback • April 2017 • $39.99 • (£24.95)
978-1-4985-0317-4 • eBook • October 2015 • $37.99 • (£24.95)
John C. Meyer is professor of communication studies at the University of Southern Mississippi.
Chapter 7: Characteristics of Individual Humor
Chapter 8: Humor and Persuasion
Chapter 9: Humor in Organizations and Cultures
Chapter 10: Humor in Personal Relationships
Chapter 11: Dangers of Humor for Relationships
Chapter 12: A Social Model of Humor
John C. Meyer thoroughly covers many of the classical and philosophical works in humor studies. However, Meyer’s most meaningful contributions are his explanations of humor functions and the communicative implications of humor usage. This book is a must read for communication scholars and people interested in studying humor.
Matthew C. Ramsey, Shippensburg University

The study of humorous communication has truly expanded and grown into its own. Meyers’ book illustrates the array of diverse humor-related topics, pulled together in one source. A great resource for anyone beginning to study humor and communication processes.
Melanie Booth-Butterfield, West Virginia University

Understanding Humor through Communication does an excellent job of summarizing and expanding upon his work on humor functions. Meyer demonstrates the range of contexts where humorous communication contributes to important outcomes. This book is a welcome addition to the field of Communication studies.
Nathan Miczo, Western Illinois University