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Furiously FunnyComic Rage from Ralph Ellison to Chris Rock$
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Terrence T. Tucker

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780813054360

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813054360.001.0001

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A Joke to the Eye

(p.1) Introduction
Furiously Funny

Terrence T. Tucker

University Press of Florida

This chapter establishes the definition of comic rage and traces the history of humor and militancy in African American literature and history. It distinguishes between comic rage and satire, culminating in an examination of George Schuyler’s Black No More. It details how comic rage acts as an abjection (from Julia Kristeva) that breaks down simplistic ideas about race and representations that appear in literature and popular culture. While identifying Richard Pryor as the most recognizable employer of comic rage, this chapter also points to figures like Sutton Griggs, Ishmael Reed, and Malcolm X; who embody the multiple combinations of anger and comedy that appear in the chapters of the book. It outlines the contents of the chapters that trace the development of comic rage in relation to the various political and literary moments in American and African American life.

Keywords:   satire, comic rage, abjection, Julia Kristeva, Black No More, George Schuyler, Sutton Griggs, Ishmael Reed, Malcom X

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