Laughter and compassion

Thomas Pavel

Abstract


The paper examines a few traditional types of humor in literature: the laughter based on contempt, present in classical comedy; the strong, happy laughter present in Rabelais; the elegant laughter in pastoral and high-brow comedy; and the laughter of complicity, elicited by smart clowns.  To these types, one should add the compassionate laughter, a variety which, from the 19th century on, targets the ridiculous faults of the characters while showing a certain amount of sympathy for their human frailty.  Thanks to the modern rise of equality between human beings, laughter, in addition to contempt and rejection, gets a new touch of compassion and pity. 


Keywords


Laughter; Contempt; Compassion; Sin; Equality

Full Text:

PDF (Italiano)


DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13125/2039-6597/2536

NBN: http://nbn.depositolegale.it/urn%3Anbn%3Ait%3Aunica-18883

Article Metrics

Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM


Between Journal is published by the University of Cagliari - Maintenance for this OJS installation is provided by UniCA  Open Journals, hosted by Sistema Bibliotecario di Ateneo.

Between Journal is published with the funding of the Bank of Sardinia Foundation.

ISSN 2039-6597

CC-By lockssDOAJ seal SPARC Europe