Laughter and the Brain: Can humor help us better understand the most complex and enigmatic organ in the human body?

Restak, Richard
June 2013
American Scholar;Summer2013, Vol. 82 Issue 3, p18
Academic Journal
The author examines how humor, laughter, and the perception of humor can advance understanding of the brain. He discusses his use of cartoons in his neuropsychiatric practice, how humor impairment may signal problems of brain functioning, and the mental and physical benefits of laughter. According to the article, humor is associated with networks in the brain involving the temporal and frontal lobes. The author also discusses the concept of scripts in humor, the incongruity resolution model of humor, and the superiority theory. He also examines the brain's role in creating jokes and cartoons, how physical injuries to the brain can impair humor, and humor within the workplace.


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