It’s Not (Only) The Joke’s Fault: A Speech Act Approach To Offensive Humor

Philosophisches Jahrbuch:318-338 (2015)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Usually the ethics of humor revolves around the content of humor. After giving a synopsis and exposing some shortcomings of the recent controversies, this paper takes into account additional aspects and proposes a change of perspective from token to type level and deploys tools of the philosophy of language to tackle the question whether a joke as a type can be considered morally flawed irrespective of its tokens. After exploring possible ways one can think of to furnish evidence for the opposite position, two novel lines of argumentation based on counterfactual conditionals and speech act theory are provided to show that these ways aren’t viable and that joke as types (even offensive jokes like sexist or racist ones) are ethically neutral. Moreover, the presented approach increases the resolution of the debate and provides a framework to capture other hitherto neglected questions of the philosophy humor as well.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2017-01-07
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

View all 14 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
204 ( #16,173 of 42,343 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
44 ( #15,177 of 42,343 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.