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Tag: Humor

We’re excited that you’ve joined the conversation! At HMU, we want to continue the great authors’ conversations in a contemporary context, and this blog will help us do that. We look back to Aristotle and the early philosophers who used reason and discourse to gain wisdom and now we endeavor to do the same every day.

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Dore Rabelais Physeter

June 23, 2023

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

To all the “honest drinkers” – as Rabelais would have it – congratulations! We made it to the final post in this series on Rabelais. Hopefully the various connections have enriched your experience of what is often considered difficult reading. Today’s blog concludes with Book Four, which means that it is up to you to make modern-day connections for Book V.

 » Read more about: Reading Rabelais, Part IV  »

June 16, 2023

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

For me, reading Rabelais was slow going. Crawling through the text, however, brought moments of joy as I saw strains of other, later works. The past few blogs attempted to highlight some of those connections as a way to bridge the gap between Rabelais and contemporary students. I’m not sure what the best way might be to introduce students to his work,

 » Read more about: Reading Rabelais, Part III  »

June 9, 2023

Thanks to Chad Greene, a 2023 Fellow in Ideas recipient, for today’s blog.

Depending on your concentrations, perhaps you have read enough about probability and statistics to dissuade you from playing the types of lotteries states tend to sponsor, such as MegaMillions or Powerball. But, in my own reading of one of the Great Books this spring, I have discovered a delightful lottery that I encourage all lovers of epic poetry to try out.

 » Read more about: Have a Difficult Decision to Make? Have a Copy of Virgil or Homer Handy?  »

June 2, 2023

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Last week’s blog (https://hmu.edu/2023-5-26-reading-rabelais-part-ii/) concluded with a suggested connection between Book Two of Rabelais’s Gargantua and Pantagruel and Monty Python skits. We cannot stop at the end of Book Two, however. Moving into Book Three, we find a lengthy discussion between Pantagruel and Panurge about the pros and cons of marriage. Panurge wants to know whether or not he should marry.

 » Read more about: Considering the Cuckold, Rabelais Continued  »

December 9, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

As we enter the season of Scrooge, I couldn’t resist a comparison of Molière’s The Miser with David Hume’s musings on wealth. In A Treatise of Human Nature, published in 1740, David Hume explains that wealth provides humans with a unique sort of pleasure. He also notes that money involves both pleasure and power,

 » Read more about: On Misers  »

August 19, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

By this time of the summer, I am always awash in fruit. I love it…and I hate it. Harvesting your own produce is time sensitive, messy, and exhausting. Yet there is nothing that I love better in this world than homemade peach pie and homemade peach jam. Overflowing trees leads to an overflowing kitchen, for which I am blessed.

 » Read more about: Phrases with Fruit  »

October 29, 2021

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

When Gulliver travels to Brobdingnag, he describes many things with disgust. Therefore, it seems fitting, for a Halloween treat, to revisit some of Swift’s grotesque elements from the world of Brobdingnag. If you find this overly terrifying, keep in mind that Gulliver survives Brobdingnag and also that Swift revels in the hilarity of his tale (as do his readers).

 » Read more about: Swift’s Version of Grotesque  »

October 4, 2019

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

In a 2014 interview with David Letterman, Jerry Seinfeld says that he was inspired to create Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee to play with a new format, something that could be viewed on a phone. This occurred to him at a time when recent changes to technology have really disbanded old-school structures in media. No longer must a sitcom,

 » Read more about: Comedy Hour  »

January 12, 2018

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post: from Chaucer to Chappelle

“Let fancy fly, with all her lofty graces,/ Pack wisdom in, with tenderness and passion,/ But never put good fooling out of fashion.” – Goethe

Chaucer’s wit still resonates today. In The Canterbury Tales he developed characters that might also fit straight into contemporary society.

 » Read more about: From Chaucer to Chappelle  »

August 11, 2017

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Before we even begin, I feel that I have to apologize…today’s post takes the fun out of humor. In analyzing what makes a joke funny, we are pretty much surgically separating humor from the joke. So, having said that, let’s dive in…. To better understand today’s conversation, you might take a peek at the following video of Jerry Seinfeld talking with Alec Baldwin in Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee (about 11 minutes).

 » Read more about: Comedians in Cars  »

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