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    Inside Jokes: Using Humor to Reverse-Engineer the Mind (Hardback) By (author) Matthew M. Hurley, By (author) Daniel C. Dennett, By (author) Reginald B. Adams

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    DescriptionSome things are funny -- jokes, puns, sitcoms, Charlie Chaplin, The Far Side, Malvolio with his yellow garters crossed -- but why? Why does humor exist in the first place? Why do we spend so much of our time passing on amusing anecdotes, making wisecracks, watching The Simpsons? In Inside Jokes, Matthew Hurley, Daniel Dennett, and Reginald Adams offer an evolutionary and cognitive perspective. Humor, they propose, evolved out of a computational problem that arose when our long-ago ancestors were furnished with open-ended thinking. Mother Nature -- aka natural selection -- cannot just order the brain to find and fix all our time-pressured misleaps and near-misses. She has to bribe the brain with pleasure. So we find them funny. This wired-in source of pleasure has been tickled relentlessly by humorists over the centuries, and we have become addicted to the endogenous mind candy that is humor.


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  • Full bibliographic data for Inside Jokes

    Title
    Inside Jokes
    Subtitle
    Using Humor to Reverse-Engineer the Mind
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Matthew M. Hurley, By (author) Daniel C. Dennett, By (author) Reginald B. Adams
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 376
    Width: 152 mm
    Height: 229 mm
    Thickness: 19 mm
    Weight: 658 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9780262015820
    ISBN 10: 026201582X
    Classifications

    BIC E4L: PSY
    B&T Book Type: NF
    B&T Modifier: Region of Publication: 01
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: S2.3
    B&T Modifier: Academic Level: 05
    BIC subject category V2: JMR
    Ingram Subject Code: PS
    B&T General Subject: 670
    BISAC V2.8: PSY031000
    BIC subject category V2: JMQ
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 15350
    BISAC V2.8: PSY013000
    B&T Approval Code: A11330000
    B&T Merchandise Category: UP
    BISAC V2.8: PSY008000, PHI034000
    DC22: 152.43
    LC subject heading: , ,
    B&T Approval Code: A11604800
    LC subject heading:
    DC22: 152.4/3
    LC classification: BF575.L3 H89 2011
    LC subject heading: , ,
    Thema V1.0: JMQ, JMR
    Edition
    1
    Illustrations note
    Illustrations
    Publisher
    MIT Press Ltd
    Imprint name
    MIT Press
    Publication date
    01 April 2011
    Publication City/Country
    Cambridge, Mass.
    Author Information
    Matthew M. Hurley is currently researching teleology and agency at the Center for Research on Concepts and Cognition at Indiana University. Daniel C. Dennett is University Professor and Austin B. Fletcher Professor of Philosophy at Tufts University. He is the author of Sweet Dreams: Philosophical Obstacles to a Science of Consciousness (MIT Press) and other books. Reginald B. Adams, Jr., is Associate Professor of Psychology researching emotion and social perception at Penn State University.
    Review quote
    "[O]ne of the most complex and sophisticated humor theories ever presented...The authors should be lauded for their thought-provoking and original work." --Evolutionary Psychology "The theory [the authors] elaborate is a detailed and sophisticated descendant of incongruity theories. ... The learned and even-handed stance adopted by [them] regarding problem cases is ... upbeat: they regard their theory as a provisional staging post, and a prompt to further empirical enquiry into these open-ended issues. On balance, that is probably the right attitude to take." -- The Times Literary Supplement " Inside Jokes is the most persuasive theory of humor in the centuries that scientists have been trying to explain why we crack up. Extra bonus: unlike most such research, which is about as funny as a root canal, Hurley's analysis is -- and I don't think I'm going out on too much of a limb here -- the funniest thing the MIT Press...has ever published (in a good way)." Sharon Begley The Daily Beast "Science advances by asking new questions, and Matthew Hurley, Daniel Dennett, and Reginald Adams raise a lot of them... Some of these questions have been asked before, but no previous attempt succeeds in answering so many so well." Walter Sinnott-Armstrong Science