If you have a CFP you would like to publicize, please email Tracy Wuster at or post in a comment to this page.


CFP Studies in American Humor – Special Issue on Native American Humor

In Custer Died for Your Sins, Vine Deloria stated that, “One of the best ways to understand a people is to know what makes them laugh. Laughter encompasses the limits of the soul. In humor life is redefined and accepted. Irony and satire provide much keener insights into a group’s collective psyche and values than do years of research.” In a North American context, the notion of cultural exchange and understanding through humor appears somewhat unilateral in that settler forms of humor often erase indigenous existence and refuse native sovereignty. At the same time, indigenous forms of humor often expose and critique the oppressive, colonialist logic of this humor as acts of sovereignty reclaiming power over (self-)representations.

Thus, rather than viewing humor as mere entertainment, this special issue seeks to examine the complex ways in which humor critiques, interacts with, and produces power; functions as a means of oppression or subversion; destabilizes a dominant narrative or gives rise to a counter-narrative; or behaves differently when performed in a sacred or profane text. Some of the questions to consider are: What is the purpose and function of humor and laughter? How is Native American humor culturally specific? How does Native American humor inform or perform identity? How is Native American humor communicated and what is lost in translation? How can humor be oppressive or subversive? By what means is humor produced? What different effects might different forms (visual, verbal, oral, written, musical etc.) of humor produce?

To open up possibilities for interdisciplinary discussion, the editors welcome research from a variety of fields, including but not limited to literature, religion, philosophy, law, political science, anthropology, sociology, linguistics, history, archeology, museology, gender/queer studies, popular culture, art and media studies. Please note that our journal’s charge is the study of humor, so any disciplinary investigation must also include an emphasis on humor. We are also open to proposals for original creative works of Native American humor.

We invite proposals that address Native American humor through one or more of these topics:

* Language/rhetoric of humor                               * Satire, sarcasm, and irony

* Humor as weapon, critique, and/or healing   * Tricksters

* Formal representations:                                                 * Performance: stand-up;

visual art; literature; theater; music                                sketch comedy

* Popular culture: cartoons; new media             * Humor in/and politics

* Humor in/and society and/or social movements    * Tragedy and trauma; the tragicomic

* Humor and sexuality                                            * Laughter v. the lack of humor

* Hollywood misrepresentations and

other cultural stereotypes


Please submit proposals (500-1000 words) to no later than March 1, 2019. Those whose proposals are selected will submit essays (6000-8000 words) by September 1, 2019. Please direct any questions to Marianne Kongerslev, guest co-editor ( or Larry Howe, co-editor (








Call for Papers: Studies in American Humor


Studies in American Humor (StAH) invites submissions for upcoming issues.  Submissions of essay manuscripts of between 5000 and 8000 words are welcome on any topic, theme, practice, practitioner, and medium of American humor.  StAH values new transnational and interdisciplinary approaches as well as traditional critical and historical humanities scholarship.

The official journal of the American Humor Studies Association, Studies in American Humor (ISSN 0095-280X) has published scholarly essays, review essays, and book reviews on all aspects of American humor since 1974.  Issues appear semi-annually in spring and fall; articles are indexed in the MLA International Bibliography and available in full text in EBSCOhost’s Humanities International Complete and Literary Reference Center databases.

Additional information can be found at  Please address essay submissions and inquiries to Judith Yaross Lee, Editor of Studies in American Humor, at

Please address books for review and interest in serving as a reviewer to

Tracy Wuster, Book Review Editor, at


Humor: The International Journal of Humor Research

Instructions for Authors

Contributors are invited to submit articles pertaining to humor research to the editor

Giselinde Kuipers
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
University of Amsterdam
OZ Achterburgwal 185
1012DK Amsterdam
The Netherlands

See website for more information.


Comedy Studies

Comedy plays a more important role today than ever before: it is a multi-billion dollar global industry, with Hollywood comedies taking major profits each year and comedians commanding huge salaries and audiences worldwide. Yet there is currently no academic journal dedicated to these cultural phenomena.

Comedy Studies is a response to this glaring absence. The journal will cover multiple aspects of comedy, with articles about both contemporary and historical comedy, interviews with practicing comedians and writers, reviews, letters and editorials. The journal seeks to be instrumental in creating interdisciplinary discourse about the nature and practice of comedy and provide a forum for the disparate voices of comedians, academics and writers. In this way, the journal aims to be the first step in the creation of a community committed to the promotion, documentation and expansion of the field of comedy studies.

Sample themes might include Ancient Greek theatre, the relation of comedy and food and comedy and gender. Another interest would be the role of comedy in therapy; in medical circles comedy is being incorporated into the healing process and professionals are beginning to develop methods of using laughter to deal with physical and psychological problems. The journal is also intent on investigating historical attempts to analyse comedy, from Aristotle to Freud. Finally, it aims to create links between the growing number of university departments who offer specialist units or courses in comedy in the UK and abroad.

Comedy Studies invites contributions from researchers and practitioners throughout the world seeking to analyse all aspects of comedy, laughter and joking. Some proposed topics are:

•    Contemporary performance aspects in comedy
•    Comedy and gender 
•    Comedy and therapy
•    The comedy foreigner
•    Comedy in political life


See this page for expired announcements.

Copyright © 2000-2011 American Humor Studies Association



One thought on “Announcements

  1. Steven Andrew Benko says:

    CFP: Ethics in Comedy, edited by Steven A. Benko

    What makes a joke right or wrong? When is it good or bad to laugh? The rights and wrongs of a
    joke can be expressed in political terms: a joke is politically incorrect or it exploits a marginalized
    group of people. Alternatively, a joke can be inappropriate or mean-spirited. A joke can make
    someone feel bad about their race, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, body, gender
    identity, and the list can go on and on. Laughter can hurt someone’s feelings, reveal that the
    laugher lacks manners, or maybe holds to racist, sexist, or other offensive views. The same way
    that a joke can make a person feel self conscious about an aspect of their self, laughter
    reinforces in-group/out-group dynamics and can make a person feel excluded, isolated, or

    These negatives are balanced against the good that jokes and laughter can do: when they
    punch up, jokes and laughter can diminish the power that others hold over us. Comedians can
    be the sharpest of cultural critics, using irony, satire, and parody to reveal hypocrisy, speak
    difficult truths, and skewer social attitudes and biases that marginalize and oppress individuals
    and groups.

    But how do we speak of an ethics of comedy? The difficulty of an ethics of jokes and laughter is
    that so much of what makes humor work — and much of the work that humor does — is based on
    transgression. This edited volume seeks contributions that attempt to formulate an ethics of
    comedy. When is a joke right or wrong? Is it wrong if it offends, or right if it offends in the right
    way? How are we to determine the moral rightness or wrongness of laughing at one moment
    but not the next? Are there jokes that ought not to be told or punch lines that ought not to be
    laughed at? And how are we to know when this is the case?

    The collection should be accessible to upper level undergraduates. Essays should articulate a
    general approach to jokes and laughter and then apply that approach to specific examples.
    Examples can be drawn from any medium (stand-up, television, movies, internet, etc.). Essays
    that deal with comedians, topics, or ethical theories that undergraduate students would
    encounter in other courses are encouraged.

    Please submit proposals for essays of 6,000-8,500 words that explore the ethics of comedy:
    – Frameworks for an ethics of humor, jokes, and laughter
    – Normative ethical theories and humor, jokes, or laughter
    – Ethics and superiority, relief, and incongruity theory
    – An ethical analysis of a specific comedian
    – How a particular ethicist, philosopher, or theologian addresses the moral rightness or
    wrongness of laughter
    – The ethics of jokes about a controversial social topic, e.g. abortion, body shape or size,
    sexual violence, illness, etc.
    – Historical approaches to the ethics of laughter: what was the moral status of humor,
    laughter, and jokes in the past?
    – Evolving social standards, ethics, and humor: what jokes used to be funny and are not
    appropriate any more?
    – Politics vs. ethics in humor

    Send your questions about the book or submit your short description to Steven A. Benko at . The chapter proposal should consist of a short abstract (275-350
    words), chapter title, and a brief biography. Collaborations are welcomed. All proposals must be
    received by January 7, 2018. Final manuscripts of 6,000-8,500 words should be submitted in
    MLA style by August 20, 2018.

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