• Future Roman Empire II
    6
    What is a joke? Why does it appeal to us? Do jokes help us through mental and emotional conquest? Why shouldn't we joke about 'immoral things'. Why should I take into consideration of another individuals moral stratification? How would I know their understanding of if it is 'funny' or hurtful. How do we determine an appropriate joke? Is there such thing? Well maybe there is within certain societies. Can we joke about death? Is that ok? Or does your view not agree? Does your moral stop your choice? Is laughing at something terrible a crime? Is making a joke about something a crime? Too what I consider an extreme inhuman act, the slaughter of jews, is that ok to joke about? Or is that something not valid or 'appropriate'. I know i am using fixed language that is easily challenges, but what can a joke be? Can you win from a joke? Can you lose? Is there anything to stop me from joking about anything I want? It's either all jokes are allowed or none are (I think that's a quote from somewhere pls help). Anyway, I would like to know your point of view of what allowed or not allowed or valid or invalid.
  • Terrapin Station
    9.9k
    Absolutely zero humor taboos here.

    That some people have humor taboos helps the impact of some humor, though.
  • yupamiralda
    81
    Humor is, broadly, an attempt to demonstrate power over the subject of the joke. However, in a lot of jokes dependent on context, it's difficult to pin down what's funny.

    I used to be a joker. I treated every situation as if it existed for me to make ironic comments about. It's no way to live (if you stand ironically outside everything, where are you?). I'm still known to make people laugh. It comes in handy.
  • unenlightened
    3.6k
    'Can't take a joke' is the eternal cry of the bully.

    https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/1139855/Jo-brand-bbc-radio-4-brexit-news-milkshake-battery-acid-Nigel-Farage

    And here is a 'joke' that I find unfunny and tending to incite one of the worst forms of personal violence. As it goes it is a joke by someone I quite like against someone I despise, but nevertheless I find it unacceptable.
  • ZhouBoTong
    290
    Absolutely zero humor taboos here.

    That some people have humor taboos helps the impact of some humor, though.
    Terrapin Station

    I agree with this. The more taboo, the more ironic. Most humor plays off some form of irony.

    The funniest moments are often in the most inappropriate situations (someone farting is funny, someone farting at a wedding is funnier - I clearly use very sophisticated humor). It becomes an assessment of laughs vs offends. Fortunately, I am socially awkward so I save funeral jokes for myself...but MY funeral will definitely have jokes (unless my death is entirely unexpected and I have no time to prepare).

    'Can't take a joke' is the eternal cry of the bully.unenlightened

    Despite having no personal limits on humor, I can still understand that others do. I also hate the idea that I made someone's day/month/life worse do to my behavior. Therefor, jokes that put other people down are avoided until another person makes a joke that puts someone down; they have just announced themselves as fair game (I assume they can take a joke if they can dish it out, although many can't). I also tell jokes to get laughs. If I don't get laughs, but instead, I get offended tears, then I have just made myself sad and unhappy (or at least I will become sad as soon as I realize I just made someone else unhappy).

    And here is a 'joke' that I find unfunnyunenlightened

    I have 2 problems...First, it isn't very funny. Offensive jokes need enough humor to outweigh the offense. I am not sure that "joke" is funny at all. Second, it feels a lot more like a suggestion than a joke. Even if it is a joke, she KNOWS someone might act on the idea.

    So I guess I am saying that I do not limit what can be viewed as funny, but I absolutely limit myself from telling jokes that others may not like.
  • NKBJ
    1.1k
    Why should I take into consideration of another individuals moral stratification? How would I know their understanding of if it is 'funny' or hurtful. How do we determine an appropriate joke?Future Roman Empire II

    Woman tells you she lost her baby yesterday due to SIDS. Are you saying you wouldn't realize that a joke about dead babies is totally inappropriate right now?

    I think you should take cues from the person you're talking to. If that person in some way indicates that s/he is using gallows humor to deal with some horrible experience, you can try to contribute. If not, then just be compassionate and nice.

    Personally, I think people who make occasional jokes are just trying to make others feel good/laugh, but incessant jokesters are just annoying and want attention. Or, as unenlightened said, they are actually trying to bully others and get away with it under the guise of "humor."

    Basically: know your audience, pick your timing, and remember that the world does not revolve around you.
  • fishfry
    629
    Humor is, broadly, an attempt to demonstrate power over the subject of the joke.yupamiralda

    This is why we can't have funny comedians anymore.
  • Bitter Crank
    7.8k
    That some people have humor taboos helps the impact of some humor, though.Terrapin Station

    n a lot of jokes dependent on context, it's difficult to pin down what's funny.yupamiralda

    This is why we can't have funny comedians anymore.fishfry

    Getting a laugh is tricky. There's the joke, the delivery, and the audience. The audience is the wild card, the least controllable factor. Good comedians "read the room" and adjust the material.

    These were successful jokes.

    A blonde and her father are walking down a street when the father says, ''Look, a dead bird.'' And the blonde looks up and says, ''Where?''

    This man is walking by an insane asylum and he hears the inmates inside chanting inside "Thirteen, thirteen, thirteen--" He is so fascinated that he walks up to the door and puts his eye up the keyhole and somebody pokes him in the eye with a sharp stick and the inmates start changing "Fourteen, fourteen, fourteen--"

    A man walked out of the bar and got in his car and a policeman came over and said, "Sir, your eyes seem to be bloodshot. Have you been drinking?" The man looked at the police officer and replied, "Officer, your eyes seem to be glazed. Have you been eating doughnuts?"

    Three businessmen on a plane. First guy says, “That suit looks great on you. You must be a Harvard man.” Second guy says, “Yes, thank you. I did go to Harvard. And with that classy briefcase, I would guess that you went to Yale.” First guy says, “Yes, I am a Yale man.” They both look at the third guy, and they say, “You must have gone to University of Oklahoma.” Third guy says, “Why yes, I did. How could you tell?” “We saw your class ring when you picked your nose.”

    Just what is the handicapped parking situation at the Special Olympics? Is it still just the two spaces?

    Men want the same thing from their underwear that they want from women: a little bit of support, and a little bit of freedom.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.3k
    Absolutely zero humor taboos here.

    That some people have humor taboos helps the impact of some humor, though.
    Terrapin Station

    :up:

    Except for slapstick, real, effective humor has teeth. If a joke doesn't offend someone somewhere, it probably is not very funny.
  • I like sushi
    1.2k
    Humour is a ground where disconcerting ideas can be addressed more openly than they could in a serious debate. Not all comedians are good at their jobs and not all of us have good delivery; and none of us all of the time!

    In order to make jokes bad jokes will happen. Violence, sex, death and stupidity are all funny subjects. As they are deemed quite personal in western society people get offended. It is interesting to experience other cultures where what you deem as ‘bad taste’ is normal and what you deem normal is deemed ‘bad taste’ in other societies.

    Given that comedy is a close relative of tragedy we shouldn’t be surprised that people find some things to be in ‘bad taste’ and fail to understand that the ‘bad taste’ is precisely the reason we laugh (some of us at least!)

    eg. “What’s funnier than a dead baby ...?”

    The instant reaction to the above question is a mixture fo disgust and intrigue and that is why the punchline works (whether you know the punchline or not!)
  • I like sushi
    1.2k
    Rocky Gervais puts this across well enough when making jokes about pedophiles ... he doesn’t seek out pedophiles to tell the jokes to.
  • fdrake
    2.3k
    I think it's a myth that PC is destroying good humour. If it's destroying anything, it's terrible jokes with no insight. Compare:

    Bad: "Have you seen these trans people they have now? Yeah, these trans people. How do they wear hats? I mean, a fedora isn't a felt boater people! Come on. You can't just be one hat one day and then another hat the next day. That's fucking stupid.'

    Good: "When I was having some sperm frozen, pre transition.. Well, I've never felt like more of the feminine ideal of the mother than when furiously masturbating into one of these vials."

    The bad joke there has no teeth, it's just a restatement of stupid stereotypes; good humour should indiscriminately skewer those.
  • ssu
    1.4k
    I think you can make jokes about any topic, yet the way you make it and just how you make it is important. Something that is just veiled as a joke might not be proper at all.

    It's like the difference between a cartoon and a travesty. One picture is intended to be funny and actually can be respectful (and getting angry about it just shows the person has no humour) while the other picture can simply describe vitriolic hatred. And the latter doesn't have to be at all funny, which can be quite intended.
  • luckswallowsall
    46
    It's wrong to joke about everything if it harms people.

    I can't see how it could harm anyone. Because the harm in joking seems to come through the way you joke about it rather than what you joke about.
  • ssu
    1.4k
    It's wrong to joke about everything if it harms people.

    I can't see how it could harm anyone. Because the harm in joking seems to come through the way you joke about it rather than what you joke about.
    luckswallowsall
    It's a subtle thing, actually. Yet the first step to get one segment of people to harm another segment is to dehumanize the other people. Dehumanizing the enemy in war works, you know. And one way to do that is to tell derogatory jokes. Jokes are a great way to get people to talk about others in a derogatory way.

    But then again, all this of course can be taken out of context also and a quite innocent joke can be attacked with having a veiled sinister agenda. Especially today.
    .
  • Fooloso4
    622
    First, there is a difference between jokes and humor. Second, it depends on who is telling the joke. A joke I might tell about myself or my situation or something that happened to me may not be appropriate for someone else to joke about.
  • Hanover
    4.6k
    This is an easy question. All we have to do if find a single thing that it's wrong to joke about and then we've proven that there are some things it's wrong to joke about.

    So, here goes: it would be wrong to joke about the likely dryness of your grandmother's vagina as the priest was standing over her suffering, contorted and dying body reading her her last rites, as her daughter held her hand and cried.

    You shouldn't chuckle and say: "I bet when she finally dies and they roll her over, there'll be a puff of dust from her hoo-haa."

    It'd be wrong, even if correct.

    Anyone else have one?
  • Jacob-B
    30

    Mel Brooks (who is Jewish) was asked that question about the Holocaust. He replied on the affirmative.
    Yes, there are funny joked about the Holocaust that focuses on the absurdity of anti-Semitism,
    There was also an Italian film comedy: 'Life is Good'. However, trivializing the subject would be nihilistic
    Much depends on the mindset of the joker.
  • Terrapin Station
    9.9k
    Re some of the comments here, I don't agree, outside of humor discussions, that it's wrong to express vitriol, hatred, disrespect, either.

    That's not to say that I'd endorse everything that anyone would say in any context, but "either you endorse it or it's wrong" is a false dichotomy.
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