Black humour

Black humor is the kind that makes people laugh about the most dramatic subjects (death, illness, injustice, poverty…) carefully avoided by light comedy (such as vaudeville). Provocative in nature, black humor relies primarily on irony (saying one thing to express the opposite): it presents shocking ideas in a lighthearted tone to denounce the social hypocrisy that leads to ignoring the most unsettling subjects. Black humor is therefore a form of dark comedy, claiming the right to laugh about everything, but not with just anyone (as stated by the famous quote from the french humorist Pierre Desproges), meaning not with those who pretend to take this ironic discourse literally (regarding a subject like racism, for instance) and would want to endorse what it actually criticises. When another famous french humorist, Coluche, in his sketches, made racist remarks, it was to mock racists… not to laugh with them.