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Dirk Eitzen

There is a striking divide, in the literature on comedy, between approaches that stress the social functions of humor, including social control and alleviation of social stresses, and approaches that focus on the psychological mechanisms of humor, including incongruity and arousal. These two kinds of approach have proven quite resistant to integration, because they are rooted in fundamentally different understandings of the pleasure of humor. Put simply, the pleasure of the put-down is hard to square with the pleasure of the pun. This article examines new scientific research on humor, including recent brain imaging studies, to see if there is any evidence for an empirical divide. The conclusion, in practical analytical terms, is that when, near the start of Shaun of the Dead (2004), Shaun fails to notice that he is surrounded by zombies, our perception of the inappropriateness of the character's actions and our perception of the playfulness of the depiction are both necessarily involved in our perception of the scene's funniness.

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Instrumentalising Media Memories

The Second World War According to Achtung Zelig! (2004)

Maaheen Ahmed

personhood itself as an unremitting succession of activities’. 23 Furthermore, the comic element accompanying zaniness, in keeping with its intense performativity, is somewhat ambiguous, geared for the hollow laugh rather than actual mirth. Émile embodies

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Edward Lear

A Life in Pictures

Marco Graziosi

years ago, in days when much of my time was passed in a Country House, where children and mirth abounded, the lines beginning, ‘There was an old man of Tobago’, were suggested to me by a valued friend, as a form of verse lending itself to limitless

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Rogue or Lover

Value-Maximizing Interpretations of Withnail and I

Peter Alward

—lost all my mirth … and indeed it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly frame, the earth, seems to me a sterile promontory. This most excellent canopy the air, look you, this brave o’erhanging firmament, this majestical roof fretted with

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Becoming a Gentleman

Adolescence, Chivalry, and Turn-of-the-Century Youth Movements

Kent Baxter

possess Man’s strength to comfort man’s distress. Teach us Delight in simple things, And Mirth that has no bitter springs; Forgiveness free of evil done, And Love to all men ’neath the sun! Land of our Birth, our faith, our pride, For whose dear sake our

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On Shock Therapy

Modernist Aesthetics and American Underground Film

William Solomon

uncontrollable mirth.” She continues: “I try. Get it? While we have life we are superior to death, but watch out: death might be closer than you know. And that is our end. If I can postpone death even one minute, I have been successful in my art and so is all