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The idea that humor is laughing in spite of one’s circumstances carries an essential point. Dealing humorously with difficult inner or outer realities is a way of controlling life. As distinct from wit, mockery, or irony, humor deals nonaggressively with circumstances of trouble or conflict. Its affinity to grinning or laughing finds clearest expression where such forms of psychological release are found to relieve tension or bring liberation and where they can be an “infectious” aid to communication.

The modern use of the term must be seen against a significant change in…

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Winkler, Klaus, “Humor”, in: Encyclopedia of Christianity Online. Consulted online on 16 August 2022 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2211-2685_eco_H355>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004169678, 20080512

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