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Skidmore College
First-Year Experience

Scribner Seminar Program
Course Description

Comics, Jesters, Satirists, and Hacks: Locating British Humor

Instructor(s): Rebecca Krefting, American Studies

This course examines the history of comedic cultural production in England through the cultural forms of music halls, vaudeville/variety, comedy performed in working men’s clubs, comedic street performance, televised sketch comedy and stand-up comedy. Examining the history of comedy as the history of England, we will explore how comedy is influenced and shaped by shifts in social consciousness, changing economy, industrial and technological innovations, political events, and global conflict. Along the way, we will unpack the history, theories, and functions of laughter and humor while also documenting the myriad ways comic performance proliferates across media. 


Course Offered: