This hilarious parody collects hundreds of tidbits of painful reality such as "You're no good, you're not great-looking, and you're going to die someday and it's probably going to hurt." Who among us isn't sick to death of the gushy, new-agey inspirational books that blindly assert that everyone is worthy? We all know the truth, and this book is as refreshing as a slap to the face.
Just some of the depressingly humorous nuggets of truth include:* You don't really have any outstanding qualities. It's safe to say you're pretty much just like everybody else.* The only reason your pet likes you is because you feed it.* As you get older, you are going to have less and less control over your bladder.* If you take a big risk and follow your dream, chances are you're going to fall flat on your face.
You Are Worthless also features a section called "Hopeless Role Models from History," including Helen Keller ("I've had it"), and Abraham Lincoln ("Theonly thing I'm good at is losing").
In Einstein's Refrigerator, Silverman collects more than 30 of the most fascinating stories he has gathered--tales of forgotten genius, great blunders, and incredible feats of survival, as well as answers to puzzling questions.
Einstein's Refrigerator is a remarkable book with spellbinding stories. Whatever happened to the refrigerator Einstein helped invent? While it never became a commercial success, its underlying concepts became the basis for cooling nuclear breeder reactors.
Humor permeates every aspect of society and has done so for thousands of years. People experience it daily through television, newspapers, literature, and contact with others. Rarely do social researchers analyze humor or try to determine what makes it such a dominating force in our lives. The types of jokes a person enjoys contribute significantly to the definition of that person as well as to the character of a given society. Arthur Asa Berger explores these and other related topics in An Anatomy of Humor. He shows how humor can range from the simple pun to complex plots in Elizabethan plays.
Berger examines a number of topics—ethnicity, race, gender, politics—each with its own comic dimension. Laughter is beneficial to both our physical and mental health, according to Berger. He discerns a multiplicity of ironies that are intrinsic to the analysis of humor. He discovers as much complexity and ambiguity in a cartoon, such as Mickey Mouse, as he finds in an important piece of literature, such as Huckleberry Finn. An Anatomy of Humor is an intriguing and enjoyable read for people interested in humor and the impact of popular and mass culture on society. It will also be of interest to professionals in communication and psychologists concerned with the creative process.
“This book belongs on the shelf of anyone who appreciates humor. It also belongs in the laboratories of psychological researchers investigating when and how we laugh.”—T. Cameron Wild, Contemporary Psychology
“This is a significant book, and it will surely have a welcome place in any professional humor library.”—Don L. F. Nilsen, Humor
The thirteen chapters in this book are derived from the First International Conference on Jewish Humor held at Tel-Aviv University. The authors are scientists from the areas of literature, linguistics, sociology, psychology, history, communications, the theater, and Jewish studies. They all try to understand different aspects of Jewish humor, and they evoke associations, of a local-logical nature, with Jewish tradition. This compilation reflects the first interdisciplinary approach to Jewish humor.
The chapters are arranged in four parts. The first section relates to humor as a way of coping with Jewish identity. Joseph Dorinson's chapter underscores the dilemma facing Jewish comedians in the United States. These comics try to assimilate into American culture, but without giving up their Jewish identity. The second section of the book deals with a central function of humor—aggression. Christie Davies makes a clear distinction between jokes that present the Jew as a victim of anti-Semitic attacks and those in which the approach is not aggressive. The third part focuses on humor in the Jewish tradition. Lawrence E. Mintz writes about jokes involving Jewish and Christian clergymen. The last part of the book deals with humor in Israel. David Alexander talks about the development of satire in Israel.
Other chapters and contributors include: "Psycho-Social Aspects of Jewish Humor in Israel and in the Diaspora" by Avner Ziv; "Humor and Sexism: The Case of the Jewish Joke" by Esther Fuchs; "Halachic Issues as Satirical Elements in Nineteenth Century Hebrew Literature" by Yehuda Friedlander; "Do Jews in Israel still laugh at themselves?" by O. Nevo; and "Political Caricature as a Reflection of Israel's Development" by Kariel Gardosh. Each chapter in this volume paves the way for understanding the many facets of Jewish humor. This book will be immensely enjoyable and informative for sociologists, psychologists, and scholars of Judaic studies.