Apr 072013

Mark-Twain-public-domain-e1353316357400“Clothes Make The Man.  Naked People Have Little Or No Influence On Society”

– Mark Twain


Later this month, the Liquorature lads will be settling in to a discussion on Mr. Sam Clemens’s ‘Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn’.  In preparation for this little session on Southern American lit, I am now wending my way through the novel’s precursor, ‘The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer’.

The unspoken confession inherent is that I have read neither of these works before this month.  The extent of my conversability regarding Mark Twain has been limited to some biographical tidbits and a collection of great quotes.  Let’s face it…the man was a witty and insightful genius.  Anyone who hasn’t had occasion to jot down one of Twain’s pithy little remarks is sadly amiss.  Very few author’s can boast as many clever and recognizable notables as Mark Twain.

Having said this, I’ve been reflecting on some of the more humourous undertaking we’ve embarked upon in Liquorature so far.  ‘Another Roadside Attraction’.  ‘Lamb: The Gospel According To Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal’.  ‘Catch 22’.  ‘A Confederacy Of Dunces’.  Among others, that is.

I truly believe there’s a time and place for all things.  Humour included.  Those bust-a-gut laughs should generally be reserved for life’s more…appropriate situations.  Y’know…funerals (mothers-in-law, especially)…the campaign trail…prostate and gynaecological exams…the announcements of fatal diseases.  😉

Generally speaking, I’m not uber keen on humour in art (music, painting, dance, etc).  Literature however?  Fuck yeah.  If you can scare me or make me laugh out loud…you can write.  These have to be two of the most difficult tasks to accomplish in writing.  Intelligent laughs, especially, are tough to come by.

Where’m I going with this, you ask?

Well…I invite you to drop a few lines below on great examples of humour (black, satire, toilet, whatever) in literature.  I’ll post my own in the coming days too.

So…whatcha got for me?


– Curt

 Posted by at 2:30 pm

  One Response to “Humour In Literature”

  1. Stephen King’s “Tommyknockers” has two passages of sublime laughter: the dark craziness of Gardner’s decompression at the poetry after-party, and the simply hilarious story of Mr. Moran’s dog.

    At the risk of self-praise, definitely my own Bacardi 151 review.

    Asimov wrote an interestingly funny short story about “Christmas on Ganymede” which I thought was pretty good.

    “Biff” without question

    Jerome K. Jerome’s “Three men in a boat (to say nothing of the dog)” remains a classic funny of Edwardian English humour.

    It’s not very accessible, what with its Ye Olde English style: Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales is actually quite raunchy and funny.

    Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor’s 1967 Zeffirelli-directed interpretation of Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew” is hilarious.

    “Dogma” was a film that was dark, vulgar, clever and one of the funniest films I’ve ever seen, taking no prisoners in every scene.

    I’ll add to this as I think of others…

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