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Drew Hayden Taylor is a playwright, writer, and filmmaker whose work has wondrous healing capacity as he touches on matters about politics, mixed dating, smut as well as land arrogates. Using humor, Taylor proportions portrayals of indigenous experiences by the use of humor. In his film “Redskins, Tricksters, and Puppy Stew”, he makes a detailed record of various indigenous comics whose witticism mends through circulating atrocious accounts and availing moral and psychological support for communities. In Me Funny, Taylor satirizes political correctness. He makes climacteric issues more toothsome and naturalistic by having humor as a part. This essay looks at the classical theories that could be applied to aboriginal joking while touching on the functions of joking, comedy as serious, and the analysis of a joke.
Humour has been an all-important constituent of North American aboriginal culture at all times. This fact stayed unperceived by most colonists, however, in the past non-aborigines did not get the joke. Taylor makes use of humor in his writings to inform and instruct the readers. It informs us of the period of colonization and oppression of the prisoners who were kept by the colonialists. It asserts the truth and stereotype of the Indian paradigm from all perspectives. Moreover, by using jokes, Taylor brings healing effects regarding the cultures, identities, and languages of the native people. Humour keeps them sane and gives them power as well as privacy by sharing their heritage of survival. Through the use of jokes and teasing, a feeling of being worth is created, thus healing the person.
Aboriginal humor has traditionally been brushed aside or disregarded but the use of stand-up comedy in joking provides enlightening contributions as it reveals the idiosyncrasies of ordinary people in ordinary situations. A comedian, therefore, has to be careful when making a joke as there has to be credence of the formula. There has to be a punch line. A joke is a sort of aggressive rational bait through which one has to be careful as what they expect might turn up to be the opposite and the price of it may be humiliation. Therefore, comedy is serious business as a comedian always deals with controversial issues and if not careful may negate the setup and people might not like it. Comedy is a style of gaining recognition. It is a way of opening up a dialogue, and hence it has limits.
An example of a land claim joke in Taylor’s writings (2005) is “I’m an aboriginal citizen living in Canada. And I just want to say to you, on behalf of all of us: We love what you’ve done with the place.” (54). A joke like this in aboriginal culture is important but not fundamental. This joke deflates the pompousness and reveals the misery and the political faults. It is ironic as it uses humor to subvert the society of the whites and counter colonization and stereotypes. Such a joke sounds as though the native people were fighting with the foreign-born.
The integration of humor creates entertainment and brings harmony amongst different social groups. Teasing is commonly used to bring individuals of a particular tribal line back to the community’s unanimity. In conclusion, jokes play an important role in human existence by a joyous mood. It is a token of comical liberation.
Taylor, Drew Hayden. 2005. Me Funny. Canada: Douglas & McIntyre.