Benign Violations

  title={Benign Violations},
  author={A. Peter McGraw and Caleb Warren},
  journal={Psychological Science},
  pages={1141 - 1149}
Humor is an important, ubiquitous phenomenon; however, seemingly disparate conditions seem to facilitate humor. We integrate these conditions by suggesting that laughter and amusement result from violations that are simultaneously seen as benign. We investigated three conditions that make a violation benign and thus humorous: (a) the presence of an alternative norm suggesting that the situation is acceptable, (b) weak commitment to the violated norm, and (c) psychological distance from the… 

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Supplemental Material for Why So Serious? A Laboratory and Field Investigation of the Link Between Morality and Humor

  • Kai Chi Yam
  • Psychology
    Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
  • 2019
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