When is it okay to joke about a tragedy? New research shows that a comedian must carefully balance how bad and how distant an unfortunate event is to make a joke about it that won’t leave an audience stone-faced or shouting, “Too soon!”
Researchers from the Humor Research Lab (HuRL) at the University of Colorado Boulder conducted several studies to explore how psychological distance and severity impact humor about an unlucky turn of events.
In the first study, participants in an online survey were asked to describe a personal experience that became either less funny or funnier as time passed, and then to rate its severity.
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