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Humor Not Just for Fools

Ancient History? (Photo by Getty Images)
Some things — as this still from Monty Python’s “Life of Brian” illustrates — never change, and the human taste for humor is one of them. Scientists have traced the earliest jokes to 35,000 years ago but believe it may have been around as long as there have been people on Earth.

As this was April Fool’s Week humor was center stage. Everyone loves to laugh. I don’t care what culture you are a part of, or where you are from, everyone loves to laugh. Even more, humor is a part of society in ways that are so sophisticated. Humorists comment on politics, religion, societal standards, thus raising consciousness about issues that might otherwise be ignored. Some people (most people) don’t like to read about boring politics in sterile newspapers. But put that same news in a satirical form and people eat it up, and more importantly, become educated.

So, as I was scanning various ads streamed into my gmail (Big Brother has its advantages for bloggers) I came across a Discovery Channel/Discovery News story on the history of humor. Jennifer Viegas from Discovery News wrote this article on March 25th, 2008 (ahead of the April Fool’s Week) – “Ancient Humor: Raunch, Riddles, and Religion” (click the title to get to the article) that definitely puts humor, and the humorists themselves into a different light. She raises the culture of humor to an academic stature that some academics might throw a pie at, and the corresponding humorist would eat up. In any regard it is rather interesting and enlightening. Keep laughing.


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