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Aging and Humor

  • By: Melissa Bekelja Wanzer
  • In: Encyclopedia of Humor Studies
  • Edited by: Salvatore Attardo
  • Subject:General Media, Communication & Cultural Studies, Sociology of Culture
  • Keywords:humor

While there is an extensive amount of scholarship on the relationship between humor and health in young adult populations, there appears to be less available on the complex associations among humor, health, and aging. Extant research indicates that aging adults, loosely defined as those individuals 65 and older, reap a variety of intrapersonal and interpersonal benefits from using humor; however, as adults age, their ability to cognitively and affectively process humorous content deteriorates. This entry discusses the approaches that have been taken to studying the effects of humor on individuals, the benefits researchers have found for humor use and appreciation in older adults, and the challenges for older adults in using and understanding humor.

Source and Receiver Approaches to Humor Research

Much of the scholarship on humor ...

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