Cracking Jokes: Studies of Sick Humor Cycles & Stereotypes

Quid Pro Books
Free sample

Insightful, surprising, controversial and thought-provoking analyses of the jokes that have been told for years ... a classic book, now in its 30th Anniversary Edition.

 “No piece of folklore continues to be transmitted unless it means something—even if neither the speaker nor the audience can articulate what that meaning might be. In fact, it usually is essential that the joke’s meaning not be crystal clear. If people knew what they were communicating when they told jokes, the jokes would cease to be effective as socially sanctioned outlets for expressing taboo ideas and subjects.”
     —Alan Dundes, in the Preface to CRACKING JOKES 

Where there is anxiety, there will be jokes to express that anxiety. Jokes are legitimate folklore—like myths, proverbs, legends, superstitions and songs—and as such, they reflect what is on people’s minds. There has been no shortage of jokes or anxiety since the 1960s, and in this book, Alan Dundes reminds us of the jokes we have been telling, and reveals the anxiety these jokes reflect.

His interpretations are not always popular. His investigation into antisemitic jokes in Germany in the 1980s, for example, met with widespread criticism. But it is a part of society that makes a difference and should not be shielded from academic scrutiny. Dundes likens his critics to those who attack the messenger when they do not like the news. All kinds of jokes exist. He reports on what exists and applies the best methods of investigative journalism to uncover the motive and true meaning behind the jokes.

As Marc Galanter writes in the new Foreword, “A preeminent scholar of jokes, Dundes was an adventurous and prolific pioneer of the study of many realms of folklore. A tireless champion of the field, he was a major force in shifting the study of folklore from its rural and antiquarian tilt to encompass the prolific lore of modern life.… He regarded jokes not only as subject matter to be analyzed and understood in their own right, but as useful tools to uncover social and cultural patterns.” This book in particular is the culmination of these important yet understudied cultural devices. Dundes was “a deeply dedicated scholar who maintained a radiant faith that by understanding our susceptibility to the irrational we might empower ourselves to move beyond prejudice and act rationally and humanely.” The book, with the new Foreword, is republished by the independent academic press Quid Pro Books, and is finally available in digital formats. Quality ebook design includes linked notes, active contents, and legible paragraph structure for the jokes themselves.

Read more

About the author

Alan Dundes was an acclaimed professor of anthropology and folklore at the University of California, Berkeley.

Read more

Reviews

Loading...

Additional Information

Publisher
Quid Pro Books
Read more
Published on
Jan 19, 2017
Read more
Pages
198
Read more
ISBN
9781610273626
Read more
Features
Read more
Language
English
Read more
Genres
Humor / Form / Jokes & Riddles
Humor / General
Literary Criticism / Humor
Social Science / Anthropology / Cultural & Social
Social Science / Folklore & Mythology
Read more
Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
Read more
Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
Read more
Eligible for Family Library

Reading information

Smartphones and Tablets

Install the Google Play Books app for Android and iPad/iPhone. It syncs automatically with your account and allows you to read online or offline wherever you are.

Laptops and Computers

You can read books purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.

eReaders and other devices

To read on e-ink devices like the Sony eReader or Barnes & Noble Nook, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Please follow the detailed Help center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.
Bobby Henderson
CAN I GET A “RAMEN” FROM THE CONGREGATION?!

Behold the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster (FSM), today’s fastest growing carbohydrate-based religion. According to church founder Bobby Henderson, the universe and all life within it were created by a mystical and divine being: the Flying Spaghetti Monster. What drives the FSM’s devout followers, a.k.a. Pastafarians? Some say it’s the assuring touch from the FSM’s “noodly appendage.” Then there are those who love the worship service, which is conducted in pirate talk and attended by congregants in dashing buccaneer garb. Still others are drawn to the Church’s flimsy moral standards, religious holidays every Friday, or the fact that Pastafarian heaven is way cooler: Does your heaven have a Stripper Factory and a Beer Volcano? Intelligent Design has finally met its match–and it has nothing to do with apes or the Olive Garden of Eden.

Within these pages, Bobby Henderson outlines the true facts– dispelling such malicious myths as evolution (“only a theory”), science (“only a lot of theories”), and whether we’re really descended from apes (fact: Humans share 95 percent of their DNA with chimpanzees, but they share 99.9 percent with pirates!)
See what impressively credentialed top scientists have to say:

“If Intelligent Design is taught in schools, equal time should be given to the FSM theory and the non-FSM theory.”
–Professor Douglas Shaw, Ph.D.

“Do not be hypocritical. Allow equal time for other alternative ‘theories’ like FSMism, which is by far the tastier choice.”
–J. Simon, Ph.D.

“In my scientific opinion, when comparing the two theories, FSM theory seems to be more valid than classic ID theory.”
–Afshin Beheshti, Ph.D.

Read the book and decide for yourself!


From the Trade Paperback edition.
Lowell Edmunds
Classicist Lowell Edmunds and folklorist Alan Dundes both note that “the Oedipus tale is not likely to ever fade from view in Western civilization, [as] the tale continues to pack a critical family drama into a timeless form.” Looking beyond the story related in Sophocles’ drama—the ancient Theban myth of the son who unknowingly kills his father and marries his mother—Oedipus: A Folklore Casebook examines variations of the tale from Africa and South America to Eastern Europe and the Pacific. Taking sociological, psychological, anthropological, and structuralist perspectives, the nineteen essays reveal the complexities and multiple meanings of this centuries-old tale.
In addition to the well-known interpretations of the Oedipus myth by Sigmund Freud and James Frazer, this casebook includes insightful selections by an international group of scholars. Essays on a Serbian Oedipus legend by Friedrich Krauss and on a Gypsy version by Mirella Karpati, for example, stress the psychological stages of atonement after the Oedipus figure learns the truth about his actions. Anthropologist Melford E. Spiro investigates the myth’s appearance in Burma and the significance of the mother’s identification with the dragon (the sphinx figure). Vladimir Propp’s essay, translated into English for the first time, and Lowell Edmunds’s theoretical review discuss the relation of the Oedipus story to the larger study of folklore. The result is a comprehensive and fascinating casebook for students of folklore, classical mythology, anthropology, and sociology.
©2018 GoogleSite Terms of ServicePrivacyDevelopersArtistsAbout Google
By purchasing this item, you are transacting with Google Payments and agreeing to the Google Payments Terms of Service and Privacy Notice.