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Intercultural Humour - Essay Example

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Intercultural Humour Name Institution Intercultural Humour Introduction Humour is a valuable speech act within the understanding of inter-cultural communication. Humour enhances relationships and diffuses tensions that may lurk within the discourse of communication…
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Download file to see previous pages One of the challenges of understanding the place and value of humour within the multi-cultural environment is that it is not entirely translatable. In usual cases, humour is culturally-specific. A speech act with some content of humour may not apply across the cultural spectrum. In other cases, humour relates to the context and the personality of an individual. This would imply that an idea or phrase with humorous content may not be understood easily or may be distorted in the process of translating into another language or culture. Findings Case reviews have shown that humour could be used to bridge cultures by identifying some mutual linkages within the discourse of communication (Holliday, Kullman & Hyde, 2012). Andrew (2010) distinguished between humour and laughter by identifying some of the problematic areas, which define the essence of humour. In his effort, he established that humour does not necessarily translate into laughter. He sought to establish the theoretical basis on which humour is founded. In his study, Andrew identified three theories as fundamental to the understanding of humour. These include incongruity theory, relief theory, and superiority theory. He explains incongruity theory as being informed by a reaction to a logical impossibility, or to an ambiguity. This kind of humour is associated with the thinking of Kant and Kierkegaard particularly due to its drift from the conventional flow of logic. Superiority theory, according to Andrew (2010) arises out of a feeling of euphoria, which basically comes to the surface when the person making the humorous statement relates to the audience from a real or presumed higher level of seniority. Superiority theory is defended in the philosophies of Aristotle and Plato (Andrew, 2010). A third theory, which is embraced within the Freudian conception of humour, argues that the release of repressed feelings often translates in the form of humour. These theories put together provide a comprehensive framework that could be relied upon to furnish deeper connections between the element of humour and inter-cultural connections. The theories have helped in the establishment of important linkages that define life in terms of meanings and underlying meanings of words. Evidence adduced from multiple studies has established that a proper understanding of the structure of humour provides a resourceful entry point into the inner details of any given culture (Holliday, Kullman & Hyde, 2012). Humour should be understood within certain contexts, situations, origin, and other factors that situate it within some specific categories of identification. The element of humour manifests an entire corpus of ideals that are buried beneath the substance of any given culture. As such, it becomes necessary to conceptualize such evidence in light of some of the issues that attend to the general beliefs, practices, and cultural assumptions of that particular culture. Humour provides the framework of understanding the worldview of a given culture. Broadly, the study of humour involves an investigation into the various connecting points of the different genres that fall under the umbrella name. According to Andrew (2010) some of the genres that are included within the corpus of humour are satire, sight gags, stand up comedy, sarcasm, bending joke, irony, variety shows and word play. These aspects of humour usually involve various issues that work together to form a comprehensive understanding of ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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