Development of humor
I undertook some of the early work on the incongruity and resolution theory of humor, ideas that are still used in contemporary psychological and brain-imaging research. The essence of this theory is that humor results from noticing and resolving an incongruity (example below). Incongruity is defined as a surprise (defeated expectations), typically conveyed in the punchline. The theory was supported by evidence that removing a joke's resolution ruined the joke, and removing the incongruity ruined the joke even more. A developmental finding was that understanding of incongruity emerges before understanding of resolution, explaining the young child’s fondness for material that adults would consider merely silly rather than funny.
- Chan, Y. C. et al. (2012). Towards a neural circuit model of verbal humor processing: an fMRI study of the neural substrates of incongruity detection and resolution. Neuroimage, 66, 169–176.
- Shultz, T. R. (1974). Order of cognitive processing in humour appreciation. Canadian Journal of Psychology, 28, 409-420.
- Shultz, T. R. (1974). Development of the appreciation of riddles. Child Development, 45, 100-105.
- Shultz, T. R., & Horibe, F. (1974). Development of the appreciation of verbal jokes. Developmental Psychology, 10, 13-20.
- Shultz, T. R., & Scott, M. B. (1974). The creation of verbal humour. Canadian Journal of Psychology, 28, 421-425.
- Vrticka, P., Black, J. M., Neely, M., Shelly, E. W. & Reiss, A. L. (2013). Humor processing in children: influence of temperament, age and IQ. Neuropsychologia, 51, 2799–2811.
- Vrticka, P., Black, J. M., & Reiss, A. L. (2013). The neural basis of humour processing. Nature Reviews: Neuroscience, 14, 861-868.
- On their honeymoon, a couple went to the Ocean View Restaurant because it was so romantic.
- On their 10th wedding anniversary, they went to the Ocean View Restaurant because they liked to dance.
- On their 25th wedding anniversary, they went to the Ocean View Restaurant because it had a heart-healthy menu.
- On their 40th anniversary, they went to the Ocean View Restaurant because it offered an early bird special.
- On their 50th anniversary, they went to the Ocean View Restaurant because it was wheelchair accessible.
- On their 60th wedding anniversary, they decided to go to the Ocean View Restaurant because they had never been there before.