Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Sharing a joke: the effects of a similar sense of humor on affiliation and altruism

Curry, Oliver S. and Dunbar, Robin I. M. (2013) Sharing a joke: the effects of a similar sense of humor on affiliation and altruism. Evolution and Human Behavior, 34 (2). pp. 125-129. ISSN 1090-5138

Full text not available from this repository.
Identification Number: 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2012.11.003


Cooperation requires that individuals are able to identify, and preferentially associate with, others who have compatible preferences and the shared background knowledge needed to solve interpersonal coordination problems. This body of shared knowledge constitute a substantial proportion of what is called ‘culture’. It has been argued that, for this reason, individuals prefer to associate with others who share their culture, and also that shared appreciation of humor provides a particularly effective means of identifying others with the relevant preferences and knowledge. The present experiment uses a ‘dummy rating procedure’ to compare the effects of sharing an appreciation of non-humorous (first lines of novels) and humorous (jokes) cultural stimuli on interpersonal affiliation, altruism and assessment. The results show that the degree of shared appreciation for both sets of stimuli had a positive effect on Affiliation; only humorous stimuli had an effect on Altruism; and neither effected the Assessment of others' personal traits. Thus, the results support the general theory that shared culture promotes affiliation, and provide evidence of the special role of humor in interpersonal relations.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 Elsevier Inc.
Divisions: CPNSS
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Date Deposited: 12 Mar 2013 18:32
Last Modified: 28 May 2024 16:45
Projects: SOCIALNETS Project, EU-FP7 grant, British Academy Centenary Research Project
Funders: Research Disclosure

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item