The Humor of Humor: The Art and Techniques of Popular Comedy
Transaction Publishers, 2007 - 280 sidor
The Humor of Humor is much more than a pleasurable experience to read. By turns hilarious and illuminating, it is a revolutionary contribution, for beneath its endless fun and wit lays a new approach to comedy. The author compresses the vast panorama of the subject into a few basic building blocks of humor. As one turns these pages, the art, science, and history of popular comedy take shape before the readers' eyes in an entirely new way. This edition is graced by a new introduction by Arthur Burger, the dean of humor studies.
The reader will be fascinated by Esar's achievement. He invites laughing at these stories and quips, many of them classics that have delighted mankind for thousands of years. Esar tells us how wisecracks, riddles, jokes, and other types of comedy arise, develop, and disappear. He shows how the chain, the round, the reversible, and other techniques persist in ever-changing guise for centuries and why they are still as fresh today as the latest gag. These and other facts about wit and humor are interspersed with bright anecdotes. The reader will be delighted by the infinite varieties and practices of humor.
Esar's familiarity with international comedy gives substance to his claim that Europe is ahead of us in promoting the study of popular humor despite our preeminence in jocular variety and originality. America publishes more humorous books, supports more joke smiths, and has a larger audience for comedy than any other country in the world. Yet, unlike other lands, we have no public library of comic literature, no national society of humorists, and no professor of humor in any university.