Tag: Humor Code

Married To Comedy with Alonzo Bodden

Married To Comedy with Alonzo Bodden

  The winner of Season 3 of NBC’s Last Comic Standing, Alonzo Bodden, is a regular on NPR’s “Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!” and “Comedy Congress.” He is also a panelist on the Game Show Network’s “Mind of a Man.” Alonzo has also hosted Speed Channel’s “101 Cars You Must Drive” and “America’s Worst Driver” on […]

Another Benign Violation: Scare Pranks

At some point we have all been the victim of an unexpected scare by a friend or family, which often ends with one or both parties laughing. This Mannequin Scare Prank shows how fear is typically replaced by laughter: According to the Benign Violation Theory, humor arises when something is wrong yet okay, threatening yet […]

The Humor Code’s Slate series revisited: Every culture has a Polish joke—but only Americans make fun of lawyers. (#5)

In this article, Joel Warner and I examine possibly the oldest and most reliable joke form: the ever glorious, occasionally treasured and often reviled “stupidity jokes.” “Nearly every country has stupidity jokes,” [Christie] Davies told us when we visited him in Reading, England. The fact that he’s uncovered a nearly universal kind of joke is […]

The Humor Code’s Slate series revisited: Do Animals Have A Sense of Humor? (#4)

Although Rufus may not be tittering at your puns and Princess may not enjoy your Knock Knock jokes, it’s likely that they still have a sense of humor. From observing Koko the gorilla to tickling rats, scientists from all over the country are trying to get their paws on what makes up the mammalian sense of humor. Scientists […]

The Humor Code Slate series revisited: Why do people laugh? (#3)

What is the purpose of our giggles and guffaws? Joel Warner and I travel to Tanzania, talk with neuroscientist Robert Provine (author of Laughter: A Scientific Investigation), and scour for answers in this Slate article. Provine’s discoveries suggest that laughter is inherently social, that at its core it’s a form of communication and not just a byproduct […]

Comedian Shane Mauss invited me on his podcast: Here We Are

And here is…HERE WE ARE 1:20 Friends 5:45 Trolley experiment 13:15 Pedestrian in academia 22:10 Morality of laughter 23:45 Humor Code 28:50 Google for science 33:30 Theory of Funny 36:25 Laughter and/or Humor 40:20 Comedian’s laugh & Reddit 44:25 Controlling laughter 47:20 Laughter in animals 52:40 Benign Violation 56:10 Laughter appreciation 59:25 Science to enhance […]

The Humor Code’s Slate series revisited: When is a joke too soon? A scientific inquiry (#2)

In this article, Joel Warner and I discuss when jokes are ‘too soon.’  How long does someone have to wait before making a joke about a sensitive topic? We explain how to find a balance using the benign violation theory. The benign violation theory highlights the role of psychological distance in comedy: Not enough distance, […]