American Cornball

American Cornball

A Laffopedic Guide to the Formerly Funny

Book - 2014
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Miller revisits nearly 200 comic staples that have been passed down through our culture for generations, many originating from the vaudeville age. He explores the (often unseemly) contexts from which they arose, why they were funny in their time, and why they eventually lost their appeal. The result is a kind of taxonomy of humor during America's golden age that provides a deeper, more profound look at the prejudices, preoccupations, and peculiarities of a nation polarized between urban and rural, black and white, highborn and lowbrow. As he touches on issues of racism and sexism, cultural stereotypes and violence, Miller reveals how dramatically our moral sensibilities have shifted, most notably in the last few decades. Complete with more than 100 period illustrations, American Cornball is a richly entertaining survey of our shifting comic universe.
Publisher: New York, NY :, HarperCollins Publishers,, 2014
Edition: First edition
Description: x, 530 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 21 cm
ISBN: 9780062225177
Branch Call Number: 817 Mil


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Jan 07, 2017

American Cornball: A Laffopedic Guide to the Formerly Funny looks at what used to amuse the readers of newspaper comics from long ago. And yes I am old enough to remember "Our Boarding House featuring Major Hoople", "Mr. Tweedy" and "Mutt and Jeff". For me it was partly an exploration of humor and despite Mr. Twain's quote (“Explaining humor is a lot like dissecting a frog, you learn a lot in the process, but in the end you kill it.") the jokes manage to survive. It also served up in small doses. nostalgia, seeing comic strips from back in the day gave me a smile.

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