his book is the first comprehensive and systematic introduction to the linguistics of humor. Salvatore Attardo takes a broad approach to the topic, exploring not only theoretical linguistic analyses, but also pragmatic and semantic aspects, conversation and discourse analysis, ethnomethodology, and interactionist and variationist sociolinguistics. The volume begins with chapters that introduce the terminology and conceptual and methodological apparatus, as well as outlining the major theories in the field and examining incongruity and resolution and the semiotics of humor. The second part of the book explores humor competence, with chapters that cover semantic and pragmatic topics, the General Theory of Verbal Humor, and puns and their interpretation. The third part provides an in-depth discussion of the applied linguistics of humor, and examines social context, discourse and conversation analysis, and sociolinguistic aspects. In the final part of the book, the discussion is extended beyond the central field of linguistics, with chapters discussing humor in literature, in translation, and in the classroom.
The volume brings together the multiple strands of current knowledge about humor and linguistics, both theoretical and applied; it assumes no prior background in humor studies, and will be a valuable resource for students from advanced undergraduate level upwards, particularly those coming to linguistics from related disciplines.