Jewish humor makes America happy


April 23, 2021

The Torah tells us that Sarah, the matriarch of the Jewish people, laughed when told she’d give birth in her old age. Since that moment, it seems, Jews have continued laughing — at themselves and their predicaments, at each other, even at God. And beneath that laughter, and the humor that sparked it, lies the story of the Jewish people throughout the age.


Jewish humor as a genre got its start in 19th-century Eastern Europe, where Yiddish folk tales found the humor in the often-difficult everyday life of the shtetl (village). The great Jewish novelists and playwrights–like...

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