By Ted Cohen
Abe and his pal Sol are out for a stroll jointly in part of city they haven't been in sooner than. Passing a Christian church, they discover a curious check in entrance that claims "$1,000 to a person who will convert." "I ask yourself what that's about," says Abe. "I imagine I'll move in and take a look. I'll be again in a minute; simply look ahead to me."
Sol sits at the sidewalk bench and waits patiently for almost part an hour. eventually, Abe reappears.
"Well," asks Sol, "what are they as much as? who're they attempting to convert? Why do they care? Did you get the $1,000?"
Indignantly Abe replies, "Money. That's all you humans care about."
Ted Cohen thinks that's no longer a nasty shaggy dog story. yet he additionally doesn't imagine it's a simple comic story. For a listener or reader to chortle at Abe's conversion, a sophisticated set of stipulations needs to be met. First, a listener has to acknowledge that Abe and Sol are Jewish names. moment, that listener needs to be accustomed to the frequent concept that Jews are extra attracted to funds than anything. and eventually, the listener must recognize this knowledge ahead of the comic story, and with no an individual telling her or him. Jokes, briefly, are advanced transactions during which groups are solid, intimacy is out there, and another way offensive stereotypes and cliches lose their sting—at least sometimes.
Jokes is a publication of jokes and a booklet approximately them. Cohen loves an excellent giggle, yet as a thinker, he's additionally attracted to how jokes paintings, why they paintings, and once they don't. The pride on the finish of a funny story is the results of a fancy set of stipulations and procedures, and Cohen takes us via those stipulations in a philosophical exploration of humor. He considers questions of viewers, number of funny story themes, the ethnic personality of jokes, and their morality, all with lots of examples that would make you both snigger or wince. Jokes: extra funny than different philosophy books, extra philosophical than different humor books.
"Befitting its topic, this learn of jokes is . . . gentle, humorous, and thought-provoking. . . . [T]he technique matches the fabric, permitting the writer to pepper the e-book with a range of jokes with no pulling down their humor as a steamroller idea could. this type of e-book is just pretty much as good as its jokes, and such a lot of his are sturdy. . . . [E]ntertainment and ideas in a single gossamer package."—Kirkus Reviews
"One of the numerous triumphs of Ted Cohen's Jokes-apart from the no longer incidental incontrovertible fact that the jokes are so strong that he doesn't trouble to compete with them-is that it by no means attempts to sound extra profound than the jokes it tells. . . . [H]e makes you're feeling he's doing an strange type of philosophy. as if he has controlled to show J. L. Austin into one of many Marx Brothers. . . . interpreting Jokes makes you are feeling that being genial is the main profound factor we ever do-which is anything jokes additionally make us feel-and that doing philosophy is as traditional as being amused."—Adam Phillips, London evaluation of Books
"[A] lucid and jargon-free examine of the amazing undeniable fact that we divert one another with tales intended to make us chortle. . . . An illuminating learn, replete with killer jokes."—Kevin McCardle, The bring in (Glasgow)
"Cohen is an ardent joke-maker, willing to supply us a glimpse of ways jokes are crafted and to have us live really longer on their effects."—Barry C. Smith, occasions Literary Supplement
"Because Ted Cohen loves jokes, we come to understand them extra, and maybe imagine extra in regards to the caliber of fine humor and the appropriateness of laughter in our lives."—Steve Carlson, Christian technology video display
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Additional info for Jokes: Philosophical Thoughts on Joking Matters
I’m an innocent man. You gotta help Pop-pop get outta here. Give me your hair. GEORGE MICHAEL: My hair? : Give me your hair. Give Pop-pop your hair. 37 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 38 (Mis)Communication 38 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 39 TOBIAS Oh, I can just taste those meaty leading man parts in my mouth. 39 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 40 40 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 41 MAEBY: Do you guys know where I could get one of those gold necklaces with the “t” on it?
37 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 38 (Mis)Communication 38 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 39 TOBIAS Oh, I can just taste those meaty leading man parts in my mouth. 39 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 40 40 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 41 MAEBY: Do you guys know where I could get one of those gold necklaces with the “t” on it? MICHAEL: That’s a cross. MAEBY: Across from where? 41 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 42 LUCILLE I don’t understand the question, and I won’t respond to it.
TOUC 31 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 32 MICHAEL: You’re either going to jail, or if the judge shows absolutely no mercy at all, you’ll be staying here with my mother. 32 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 33 33 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 34 34 Arrested_Int_Layout 1 8/26/13 2:03 PM Page 35 BUSTER You lied to me. You said my father was my father, but my uncle is my father. My father is my uncle! : They’re gonna kill Grandpa. I gotta get out of here. I’m an innocent man.
Jokes: Philosophical Thoughts on Joking Matters by Ted Cohen