Please be sure that your original discussion entry is at least 300 words in length. Your response to a group member’s entry should be no shorter than one or two good paragraphs
Disparagement Humor and Prejudice
In disparagement humor, a specific group is denigrated, belittled, or insulted. The target can be a race, a sex, a religion, an ethnicity, or an age group. The joke is conveyed through the use of negative stereotypes. You can probably name several comedians and radio talk-show hosts who have used this type of humor. You are also likely to be familiar with the bigoted Archie Bunker character in the TV sitcom All in the Family, the four foul-mouthed, wildly politically incorrect third-graders featured in Comedy Central’s South Park cartoon, and with actor Sacha Baron Cohen’s portrayal of a fictional lecherous, anti-Semitic and racist Kazakh journalist in Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan.
Speculate on the effects of such humor… Choose a stance…positive or negative…Read and answer the corresponding questions, below. If you think that such humor has positive effects, answer the first 2 questions. If you think there are negative consequences, answer the last 3.
Do you think that this type of humor is a positive indication of how far we have come as a society that we are now able to make fun of the absurd stereotypical beliefs of the past?
Do characters like Borat appear so foolish that they cause prejudiced individuals to reject their prejudiced beliefs?
Or, do you see negative social consequences to this type of humor?
Does the media legitimatize these stereotypes?
Does exposure to this sort of humor create a norm of tolerance that allows for the degradation of others and serves to perpetuate prejudice?
Textbook link (Chapter 5 only):