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Connected JewsExpressions of Community in Analogue and Digital Culture$
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Simon J. Bronner and Caspar Battegay

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781906764869

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781906764869.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 05 December 2021

Telling Jokes: Connecting and Separating Jews in Analogue and Digital Culture

Telling Jokes: Connecting and Separating Jews in Analogue and Digital Culture

(p.181) Seven Telling Jokes: Connecting and Separating Jews in Analogue and Digital Culture
Connected Jews

Simon J. Bronner

Liverpool University Press

This chapter talks about the behaviour of 'playing on the computer' that primarily involved sharing jokes in the 1990s. It mentions folklorist Paul Smith who dubbed the computer as the 'Joke Machine' and predicted the exponential growth of its humour-generating function. It also discusses how the internet brandishes the expressive, interactive features or cultural functions of folklore that frequently lodge as commentary on popular culture. The chapter contends how joking became associated with digital transmission and how it serves emotionally and psychologically to respond to anxieties concerning diminished human control and competency for users. It cites Jewish Orthodox groups that claim that the internet and computerized devices should be used for work, and not play.

Keywords:   Paul Smith, Joke Machine, humour, computer, internet, popular culture, digital transmission

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