Conceptual Framework:

Theoretical and practical assumptions concerning the importance of humor and the various functions it fulfills in stressful situations were the starting point for this study. It follows Ziv (1984, 1996), who classifies the functions of humor into five main categories:
1. The aggressive function of humor which includes two types:
   a. Humor stemming from a sense of superiority
   b. Humor stemming from frustration
2. The sexual functions of humor
3. The social functions of humor
4. The functions of humor as a defense mechanism which contains two types
   a. Gallows humor
   b. Self humor
5. The intellectual functions of humor

Following the content analysis additional types were found;
1. Scatological humor was added to the function of sexual humor
2. Humor about food was added to the function of defense mechanism

The chapter "Interviewees' Opinions about Humor and Laughter in the Holocaust" was also included, since their opinions concerning the importance of humor during the Holocaust did not fit any of the above mentioned categories.

home         continue
  Home        Continue