Comedy is a genre of literature in which the purpose is to amuse the audience. Often comedies focus on the triumph of mirth over unpleasantness, and the ending is happy.
Examples of Comedy in Popular Culture:
There are many comedies and "sitcoms"-or situational comedies-on television.
The Big Bang Theory is a sitcom about a group of very intelligent men and their neighbor Penny (stereotypical "dumb blonde").
Seinfeld is a series starring comedian Jerry Seinfeld and his friends, who find humor and absurdity in everyday situations.
The Simpsons is a long-running animated comedy series about Bart Simpson and his family.
Examples of Comedy in Literature:
Shakespeare wrote comedies as well as tragedies. One of his most famous comedies is A Midsummer Night's Dream. The play chronicles several young couples and their "on again, off again" relationships. At the end, the character Puck tells the audience that if they were offended, then they should imagine that the play was just a dream.
Oscar Wilde wrote the famous comedy The Importance of Being Ernest, in which two different men claim to be Ernest. In this excerpt, grown men argue over muffins:
Jack: How can you sit there, calmly eating muffins when we are in this horrible trouble, I can't make out. You seem to be to be perfectly heartless.
Algernon: Well, I can't eat muffins in an agitated manner. The butter would probably get on my cuffs. One should always eat muffins calmly. It is the only way to eat them.
Jack: I say it's perfectly heartless you're eating muffins at all, under the circumstances.
Literary Terms Examples