English Literature
5 | 2018

English Literature
5 | 2018

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chevron_rightLiterature

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chevron_right2385-1635

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chevron_right2420-823X

Online issue
Vol. 5 | Num. 1 | Dicembre 2018

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English Literature | 5 | 2018

The Fear of Laughter in Restoration Prose Fiction

Jorge Figueroa
Universidade de Vigo
jdorrego@uvigo.es

DOI 10.30687/EL/2420-823X/2018/05/007

Submitted 27 Oct 2018
Accepted 26 Nov 2018

Abstract

This article draws on recent studies on the fear of derisive laughter (or ‘gelotophobia’) in order to relate them to early modern comments on laughter and to the representation of that anxiety in some texts of Restoration prose fiction, and with a particular emphasis on Alexander Oldys’s The Fair Extravagant(1682). Gelotophobia is a variant of shame anxiety and a social phobia defined as the pathological fear of being an object of laughter. Although the fear shown in the texts analysed is not pathological, it certainly reveals the strong pressure of the shame culture and gender politics prevailing in Restoration England.

Keywords
Gelotophobia. Theory of laughter. Social shame. Restoration prose fiction. Alexander Oldys.

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License 

Table of contents
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Campo DC Valore

dc.contributor.author

Figueroa Jorge

dc.title

The Fear of Laughter in Restoration Prose Fiction

dc.type

Journal Article

dc.language.iso

en

dc.identifier.uri

http://doi.org/10.14277/EL/2420-823X/2018/05/007

dc.description.abstract

This article draws on recent studies on the fear of derisive laughter (or ‘gelotophobia’) in order to relate them to early modern comments on laughter and to the representation of that anxiety in some texts of Restoration prose fiction, and with a particular emphasis on Alexander Oldys’s The Fair Extravagant(1682). Gelotophobia is a variant of shame anxiety and a social phobia defined as the pathological fear of being an object of laughter. Although the fear shown in the texts analysed is not pathological, it certainly reveals the strong pressure of the shame culture and gender politics prevailing in Restoration England.

dc.relation.ispartof

English Literature

dc.relation.ispartof

Vol. 5 | Num. 1 | Dicembre 2018

dc.publisher

Edizioni Ca’ Foscari - Digital Publishing

dc.date.issued

2018-12-17

dc.dateAccepted

2018-10-27

dc.dateSubmitted

2018-11-26

dc.identifier.issn

2385-1635

dc.identifier.eissn

2420-823X

dc.rights

Creative Commons 4.0 Attribution alone

dc.rights.uri

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

dc.subject

Gelotophobia

dc.subject

Theory of laughter

dc.subject

Social shame

dc.subject

Restoration prose fiction

dc.subject

Alexander Oldys

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