A Word in Your Ear

Back in the pre- television, post-war days  when we were “all in it together” good humour abounded. When entertainment was conversation humourist’s and people who could tell a good story and raise a laugh were treasured. Humour was gentle, cheeky – the higher-ups were fair game but self-mocking was the general mode. We all have faults and it does no harm to remember that however good we think we are often the under-dog is in the right. We looked askance at the humour of tin-pot dictatorships where populations self-censored by fear dare only laugh at those their “superiors” gave them permission to laugh at – the foreigner, women, the poor and anyone visited by misfortune.

In the eighties there was a sea change in humour. Humourous greeting cards changed their focus  to toilet activities, humiliation and cruelty. Stand-up comedians followed suit. Criticism of “superiors” was out. Comedy was no longer…

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