The Structure of Forced Reinterpretation Jokes

Graeme D Ritchie

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPublished conference contribution


There is a very common type of joke, much discussed in the literature, in which the punchline forces a reinterpretation of the preceding set-up. We sketch the discourse mechanisms which would be needed to give an adequate account of these jokes. The aim is to illuminate the internal workings of such jokes and also to outline what linguistic and logical mechanisms might be needed by a theory of joke structure.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of April Fools' Day Workshop on Computational Humour
EditorsOliviero Stock, Carlo Strapparava, Anton Nijholt
Place of PublicationEnschede, Netherlands
PublisherUniversity of Twente
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • computational humour, ambiguity, jokes, incongruity-resolution
  • ambiguity
  • jokes
  • incongruity resolution


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