Skip to main content

LOL: The Limits Of Laughter

the author of the cartoon: Rafat Alkhateeb
Wednesday, May 19, 2021, 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm

What are the limits of laughter? How do we define the boundaries of what we can joke about, on a societal and legal level? These issues are particularly topical in the digital age, with potentially offensive cartoons or memes easily gaining viral circulation via social media. On May 19th at 4:00pm CEST, the members of the 'Cartoons in Court' team will discuss the complex relation between humor and the limits of free speech, together with two special guests -- Professor Laura E. Little (Temple Law School, author of Guilty Pleasures: Comedy and Law in America, 2019) and world-renowned cartoonist Bob Mankoff (former cartoon editor of The New Yorker). In the first part of the event, the team members and Prof. Little will present their ongoing research on humor and the law; the second part, instead, will consist of a conversation with Bob Mankoff on humor and (self-)censorship, followed by an open Q&A.


The project: 

'Cartoons in Court' is a NETIAS Constructive Advanced Thinking project, whose main host is IAS CEU Budapest (2020-2023). The project focuses on visual humor controversies from an interdisciplinary perspective, with special but not exclusive regard to cartoons. The team members are Alberto Godioli (University of Groningen, PI), Vicky Breemen (Utrecht University), Andrew Bricker (Ghent University), Ana Pedrazzini (ECyC IPEHCS CONICET – Comahue National University) and Tjeerd Royaards (Cartoon Movement). On May 19th, the team will also be joined by Dr. Kelly Breemen (NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide studies). More information on the project is available here.

The event can be accessed using this link

Credit: the author of the cartoon used as the event visual is Rafat Alkhateeb