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ERIC Number: ED313726
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Nov-19
Pages: 4
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Audience Reaction to "Successful" and "Unsuccessful" Humor in Informative Discourse.
Gruner, Charles R.
A study investigated whether positive response to humor in a speech would enhance audience evaluation of the speech/speaker. A short informative speech on "listening" which included nine relevant jokes was audio tape-recorded in two versions, one in which each joke was punctuated by laughter, and one in which a stony silence greeted each joke. Subjects, 89 university students, heard one of the speech versions and completed four semantic differential scales measuring the following speaker credibility factors: qualification (authoritativeness), safety (character), and dynamism. Subjects also completed a 7-step scale bounded by "good sense of humor" and "poor sense of humor." Results showed that the "successful" speaker received dependably higher ratings on qualification, safety, and dynamism; and that sense of humor ratings favored the successful humor speaker, though not by a statistically significant amount. The speaker in both conditions was rated below the average rating of 4, indicating perhaps that the opposite of "good sense of humor" is "NO sense of humor" rather than "poor sense of humor." (SR)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A