it doesnt matter that the Irish are not actually stupid…that they maybe sharper than the English (the traditonal tellers of the Irish joke)in many instances. what matters is that the English have historically had all the power in that relationship and have been able to control the propaganda, the stereotype, and tell jokes at the expense of the other…i donno whether Israelis tell Palestinian jokes but give them another few hundred years of subjugation (as the Irish have experienced)then i’m sure the Palestinians will be making jokes against themselves also.
by the way i did find some Palestinian jokes all told by Americans…all with the punchline “BOOM” you should see this:
i sometimes wonder what it would take to make good Christian American kids in to suicide bombers…not very much i think…
i dont know much about Newfoundland or ‘Newfie’ jokes, infact i dont know much about Canadian humor i gather that Newfoudlanders are a bit disenfranchised so i geuss its natural they are the butt of jokes…
Oh, yeah! Those kids down at the youth group at our church can hardly wait to strap on the ol’ bomb-belt and walk into the local gay bar. Definitely.
There are so many things that one could say about this wonderful batch of cant that I simply don’t know where to start.
I guess the first thing to do is to tell a joke at the expense of a disenfranchised group:
Q: Why do Americans do it doggy-style?
A: So they can watch TV.
Do you ever get the feeling that people like these BBC folks really don’t get the point of humor? I mean, they see other people laughing at things, they hear the jokes, and then they knit their brows, trying to figure out why all these people around them are making strange loud whooping noises and wiping their eyes.
If they’re intelligent, they learn to simulate a sense of humor and laugh at the right places, using the habitual joke-telling cues to determine where those places are. But they don’t think anything is really funny.
Oh, sure, I laughed when my little brother fell down the stairs and split his head open, but I was a kid then! I’ve outgrown childish things.
And now they know that humor is really just about oppressing people, a way for the powerful to express their dominance at the expense of the powerless. Now they get the joke! At last!
The hermeneutic protocols governing this schema of humor are quite complex:
I don’t know if jokes about another culture are always the result of having power. New Zealanders tell lots of jokes about Australians, but would feel they were No 2 in that relationship as far as power goes. Maori tell jokes about themselves, but Pakeha are a bit sensitive about this sort of thing and would worry they were being racist. (And a lot of them would feel Maori had more power than them anyway.) Now that I think about it, it seems to be opposite (re power) here. I could tell jokes about Aucklanders but I’m not sure they would feel so comfortable with jokes about rural people. (Sort of along the lines of hitting you when you’re down.) Though most of our successful homegrown comedy programmes feature rural hicks to some degree or other. Quite often getting the better of city people, though.
Did that make it clearer?
There’s lots more in the same thread. Here’s another little taste, from a poster called Sean:
thanks again Caro…i wasnt seriously requesting a hunchback joke (there are many to be found online)…as a hunchback myself i’ve never met any other hunchbacks who tell jokes about themselves but until the 1980s such was on the daily repetetoir England humor along, ofcourse, with all the other usual recipients of racist jokes…i take the point about the power relationship, and it is useful to have the weapon of humor against the culturally dominant. i say English humor because so much of it seemed to be at the expense of the Irish, Welsh, and Scots which are the posits for ‘rural hicks’ that it couldnt rightly be called British.
Sean and Caro, I’ll let you in on a little secret: humor often targets people who are one-down because people who are one-down are usually suffering.
At the risk of violating my own moral tenets, I’ll explain the two primary components of humor: (1) surprise, and (2) suffering (preferably somebody else’s).
Hence the old British joke from my youth: So I says to the man with no legs at the bus stop, “How yer gettin’ on, then?”
And to round off this appallingly politically-incorrect diatribe, a joke of my own construction:
A club-footed Eritrean lesbian dwarf walks into a bar and orders a schnapps.
The bartender hands her the drink and says, “We don’t get many club-footed Eritrean lesbian dwarves in here.”
The club-footed Eritrean lesbian dwarf pulls out a .357 Magnum, drills the bartender right between the eyes, and says, “That’ll teach you to wield your oppressive patriarchal racist homophobic ableism at the expense of the powerless and disenfranchised!”
HA! HA! HA!