Training strategies for the spontaneous and creative use of language for humorous purposes

  • Session C

Presenter(s): Geoff Tranter

Humour can be an extremely useful resource in challenging situations, e.g. to relieve tension in difficult discussions, or to break the ice in presentations. The ability to spontaneously and creatively play with words, whilst still being aware of possible sensitivities in groups, is also a valuable skill when socializing or in small talk. This session will not simply be a presentation of strategies for creating verbal humour “on the spot”, but will provide opportunities for active participation in groups to ensure people attending can try out and develop such strategies themselves. Starting with a brief reference to Grice’s Principles of Cooperation, we will see how these can be a perfect springboard for spontaneous verbal humour in context (i.e. smile “Grice-fully”).