What Is Comedy

Topics: Philippines, Humour, Comedy Pages: 1 (329 words) Published: December 27, 2014
What is Comedy?
Professional entertainment consisting of jokes and satirical sketches, intended to make an audience laugh. Comedy (from the Greek: κωμῳδία, kōmōidía), in the contemporary meaning of the term, is any discourse or work generally intended to be humorous or to amuse by inducing laughter, especially in theatre, television, film and stand-up comedy. This sense of the term must be carefully distinguished from its academic one, namely the comic theatre, whose Western origins are found in Ancient Greece. In the Athenian democracy, the public opinion of voters was influenced by the political satire performed by the comic poets at the theatres. The theatrical genre can be simply described as a dramatic performance which pits two societies against each other in an amusing agon or conflict. Northrop Frye famously depicted these two opposing sides as a "Society of Youth" and a "Society of the Old",] but this dichotomy is seldom described as an entirely satisfactory explanation. A later view characterizes the essential agon of comedy as a struggle between a relatively powerless youth and the societal conventions that pose obstacles to his hopes. In this struggle, the youth is understood to be constrained by his lack of social authority, and is left with little choice but to take recourse in ruses which engender very dramatic irony which provokes laughter.

Comedy in the Philippines,
The term “Comedia” or comedy has always been roughly interpreted, if not mutilated by many. It is commonly equated with anything that is rib-tickling regardless of the content. Thus, when Filipino movies have those local humorists (like Panchito Alba and Dolphy) for stars, majority of the viewers immediately label those films as comedy. Likewise, the tear-filled films of Charito Solis and Paraluman are tagged as tragedy. Does comedy always refer to anything funny or light? Does this form of literature always sim to entertain? Since this book is on the Philippine Comedia, it is...
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