Humor is the ability to recognize and delight in incongruity

laughing dog and girl

Make others laugh

Positive psychologists have conducted research on humor and discovered that it is more than idle entertainment, it is beneficial. Humor, according to researchers, buffers a good mood against life’s stresses, promotes health, and is a sign of creativity and intelligence. Psychologists tell us that playfulness is at the heart of humor. In short, humor is the ability to recognize and delight in incongruity, to see the light side of adversity, and to make others smile or laugh. It is likely that humor helps bond relationships, as most folks are attracted to others who are in a good mood. The other major function of humor is overcoming stress. In fact, while Spidey uses humor to take the edge off of the life or death situations he finds himself in, we – the readers – feel increasingly connected to him because we are drawn in by his wit. One of the great appeals of Spider-Man is his humor.

by Robert Biswas-Diener
from Positive Psychology of Peter Parker (2008)
found in The Psychology of Superheroes: An Unauthorized Exploration (2008)
edited by Robin Rosenberg PhD
image – D Sharon Pruitt

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