Humor in TV Talk Shows

  •  Nawal Fadhil Abbas    


Humor is considered a common element of human interaction. It is sometimes used to enhance the utterances so as to make them more comfortable. That is why it has been given a considerable attention by many scholars from different fields of knowledge such as linguistics, psychology and sociology. In linguistics, many scholars have tried to define humor and to show its functions and the factors that enable the humor act to be adequate and interesting. This led many theories and approaches to be formulated in order to study humor from different perspectives among which the incongruity theory by Kant (1790) and the relief theory by Moreal (1983). In addition, the non-observance of Grice’s conversational maxims (1975) can also be used to create humor. Accordingly, this study aims at analyzing humor as a strategic means by which participants achieve their goals in interpersonal interaction, in particular in TV Shows, namely, Oprah Winfrey Show and Piers Morgan Show. The study also aims at investigating the way by which participants shift the topic of interaction whenever they try to avoid a certain topic by shifting to a humorous style. It is concluded that there are many factors that affect humor in TV talk shows including the personality of the host and his/her interviewees, the topic of interaction and the way through which a character deals with a certain topic.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1923-869X
  • ISSN(Online): 1923-8703
  • Started: 2011
  • Frequency: bimonthly

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