Re: Why ethnical jokes?

Matt Silberstein (
Tue, 24 Sep 1996 18:52:05 GMT

In sci.anthropology (Mojtaba) wrote:

>I have wondered why there are ethnical jokes? Is there any theory on
>this matter?

>I appreciate all type of countribuations both if you address me to
>some works or if you simply put your idea under this thread.

As someone who has on occasion told joke for money I can give a
different view than other responders. One aspect is that you don't
have much time when telling a joke. (Insert any of several timing
jokes here.) So you need to work with stereotypes. So I can't
(usually) take 30 seconds or a minute to say this person with
qualities x, y, and z. I just say this (ethnic name) and go on. The
one word stereotype captures the idea and lets the joke flow.

Also, remember that not all ethnic jokes involves negative
stereotypes. They can also involve a positive cultural self image.

Matt Silberstein
Breaking away to the other side
I wanna make sense of why we live and die
I don't get it, I don't get it

I ask my friends if they understand
They just laugh at me and watch another band
They don't worry, they don't worry

"I Don't Get It" by Michael Timmins