Magazine
Latest Issue

We need laughter now more than ever—it gets us through the darkest times

A joke does not trivilaise suffering but reminds us there is life beyond it

By Shappi Khorsandi  

Shappi Khorsandi photographed by Heathcliff O'Malley

In Kate Fox’s brilliantly observed book “Watching The English” she notes how, after the 7/7 bombing, messages from all over the world flew towards our stricken capital, declaring “We are all Londoners today.” Many Londoners responded with jokes along the lines of “Then you owe us £8 congestion charge.”

Far from making light of a crisis, a well-timed, well-aimed joke is the very thing we need to keep us hopeful. Jokes among one another help us acknowledge the dire straits we are in…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect