2006-05-24

Understanding German humour

EN: The opinion that the Germans lacking sense of humour is widespread. The Guardian analyses this in a recent article [1] and come to the conclusion that this impression is wrong. The reason why German have a humour which is hard to understand by English speaking people seems to be mainly a linguistic one. German with its more rigid structure of sentences and compound words gives less possibilities for joke based on ambiguity, one of the most important element in the British humour. "The German language provides fully functional clarity". A cultural difference make smutty jokes harder: "The Germans did not find the human body smutty or funny, due to all attending mixed saunas from an early age." So, but what humour are the German using then? Regarding to the article mainly "blunt, seemingly serious statements, which became funny simply because of their context".

It's an interesting analysis. I am working in a very international environment and will try to find evidence for the presented theories.

[1] "Lost in translation", Stewart Lee, The Guardian, May 23, 2006

1 Kommentar:

Tina hat gesagt…

i totally agree with you here. I have met about 7 German since May and they are all very blunt and funny. In fact I really like their character and I think your theory will be proven one day :)

Tina