Laughter and jokes can be explained differently towards anyone. Some people may say that laughter isn’t just caused by jokes and that jokes are not important for laughter. In Tickling the Naked Ape: The Science of Laughter, by Jimmy Carr and Lucy Greeves they quoted, “Why do Human Beings tell jokes? To make each other laugh. ” (37) There are many dimensions to laughing and joking that can also have effects on people that connect with the joke. The argument for laughter and why people tell jokes cannot be solved because there are different views of what is funny or not.
Furthermore, laughter and joking can explain understanding and can create an impact when perceived correctly. Laughter has always been around even before humans could speak. Human and apes share similar characteristics, when someone tickles a human baby or baby chimp they expressed their emotions through laughter. Some may argue that laughing is not a hard concept to learn. In the article “Researcher Roger Fouts claimed that one of his subjects, a chimpanzee name Washoe, once urinated down his neck while riding on his shoulders, then made the sign for “funny”(38). Although this statement may seem that apes may also understand humor but what apes differ from humans is human intellect towards jokes. The ape may found humor to that situation but a practical joke is different from a joke with concept that needs verbal communication and intellect. An ape cannot tell a joke that has riddles or a story to it but a human can. The article states that laughter is a release of tension (36). To some critics they may not agree with this theory. They may argue that laughing can’t create an effect that will change a person physically.
To some people it may not have an effect but the text talks about some physical benefits that laughter can create. The article states “a recent study by Professor Robert Dunbar found laughter raised people’s pain thresholds. Another study claimed that people who laugh more have healthier immune systems. A third experiment appeared to show that the increase in heart rate produced by a good laugh had health benefits equivalent to fifteen minutes on an exercise bike (42). ” These studies may not have the answers for cures but laughing to help you think of something positive and get someone’s ind off pain or try and help the body become healthier is good medicine. Although, laughing can release some tension and create positive effects so can joking. If a person is down and not in a good mood a friend wants to try and do their best to turn that negative emotion into a positive one maybe by joking around. Critics may believe differently, some may think that if a person is depressed that they will not want to laugh and they will just stay in a negative state. Anthropologist Terrance Deancon stated that laughter “is not just an expression of emotion. It is a pubic symptom of engaging in a kind of mental conflict resolution. (44) The article also goes on and talks about a laughter workshop that helps people with anxiety and depression. When first starting off at the meeting some people cannot get themselves to attend because of their symptoms, but gradually continue with the program. This program helps patients become more at ease and teaches them that joking can help release anxiety and help become positive. Patients can use what the laughter workshop has taught them and use it in the outside world. Joking is not just about making someone laugh but it can give encouragement to someone that is not used to it.
In conclusion, although there are many ways laughter and joking around can be expressed. From sharing the same characteristics with an ape through tickling a baby ape and a human baby to see them laugh and understanding the effects that laughing and joking can have on someone. Some may not agree but these reasons answer the question why human beings tells jokes. Works Cited Carr, Jimmy and Greeves, Lucy. “Tickling the Naked Ape: The Science of Laughter. ” Laughing Matters. Ed. Marvin Diogenes. New York: Pearson/Longman, 2009. p. 37-49. Print.