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Using humor to disguise racism in television news: the case of the Roma

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-02-01, 10:56 authored by Petre Breazu, David Machin

It has been argued that more research is needed on the role of humor in the expression of racism. One reason is that, in the ‘post racial’ society, overt racism has become publicly unacceptable and, therefore, tends to appear in more concealed forms. In this paper, as part of a larger project on media representations of the Roma, we look at the role of humor in a Romanian television news clip reporting on the financial rewards of begging. We draw on the critical scholarship in humor research and carry out a multimodal critical discourse analysis of a news report selected from a larger corpus. We argue that through humor a recontextualisation of the Roma’s situation takes place, transforming their actual situation of poverty and social marginalisation into a humorous account of cultural failure, incompetence, stupidity and calculated money grabbing. We show that humor is one way by which culture becomes represented as embodied by ethnic minorities.

History

School

  • Loughborough University London

Published in

HUMOR

Volume

35

Issue

1

Pages

73 - 92

Publisher

Walter de Gruyter

Version

  • VoR (Version of Record)

Rights holder

© Walter de Gruyter

Publisher statement

This paper was published in the journal HUMOR and is available at https://doi.org/10.1515/humor-2021-0104

Acceptance date

2021-10-26

Publication date

2021-11-22

Copyright date

2021

ISSN

0933-1719

eISSN

1613-3722

Language

  • en

Depositor

Dr Petre Breazu. Deposit date: 31 January 2023

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