19th International Summer School and Symposium on Humour and Laughter: 
Theory, Research and Applications
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 The Summer School 2019 in Bonn is pleased to announce that the following top-class guests of the international academic and applied humor landscape participate.

 Look forward to:


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Willibald Ruch

(University of Zurich)



Jessica Milner Davis

(PhD FRSN, Honorary Associate, University of Sydney,

and Member, Clare Hall Cambridge)


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Graeme Ritchie

(Honorary Senior Research Fellow, University of Aberdeen)


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Helga Kotthoff

(University of Freiburg)


Evelyn Ferstl.jpg

Evelyn Ferstl

(University of Freiburg)


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René Proyer

(University of Halle-Wittenberg)


Tabea Scheel.jpeg

Tabea Scheel

(University of Flensburg)


Cornelia_Peifer@RUB.jpg    Marek Bartzik.jpg

     Corinna Peifer                          Marek Bartzik

(University of Bochum)


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Tobias Esch

(University of Witten/Herdecke)


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Christian F. Hempelmann

(Texas A&M University Commerce)



Laura Fernandez

(Humor Coach, Clown;

picture credit: Jim Moore)



Eckart von Hirschhausen

(foundation HUMOR HILFT HEILEN, Bonn)



and more…




Structure of Course

There will be sessions from Monday morning to Friday afternoon inclusive, with one afternoon free for relaxation, sight-seeing, etc., and about half a day during the week for the Symposium. For the rest of the time, classes will be presented by a number of lecturers. (See the main Summer School site for information about previous events in this series.)

The sessions are of two types:

Talks: These usually last about 45-50 minutes with a further 10 minutes or so for questions and discussion. These constitute a single slot on the timetable. Most of the presentations are Talks.

Workshops: A Workshop is a double (1 or 2 hour) slot, so that the presentation can go into more depth and specialisation, and will usually be in parallel with some other very different session(s), so that participants have a choice between specialisations. A Workshop may involve activities other than traditional lecturing, for example discussion, debate, or exercises carried out by the audience members.

There will also be a small number of Meet the Lecturer sessions, where a participant can sign up for a short one-to-one discussion with a lecturer of his/her choice.



The Symposium is where participants may present their planned or finished research, or ideas on how to implement and use humour in applied settings, in any form they like.


Details of Presentations


(July 1st)
(July 2nd)
(July 3rd)
(July 4)
(July 5)
8:30 - 9:00   Meet the lecturer
09:00 - 10:00 9-9.30 Registration
9.30-9.45: Moderation by
von Hirschhausen
9.45-10: Welcoming by Ritchie
Milner Davis:
Bergson’s Theory of the Comic: Time and Freedom and their Applications Past and Present
Humor@work I:state of the art I (lecture) 
Hempelmann: Types of Linguistic Humor Theories & General Theory of Verbal Humor Ferstl:
Psycho- and neurolinguistic studies of humour comprehension (I)
10:00 - 11:00 Ritchie:
Incongruity and its Resolution
Grants - how to apply succesfully?
Humor@work II: How does humor work @ your (PhD) work, and how to proceed from here? (workshop)
The Science of Joyful Challenge (lecture)
What did Positive Psychology bring to humour research?
11:00 - 11:30 Coffee break
11:30 - 12:30 von Hirschhausen Fernandez:
Humor in the Healing Arts – or – What is this Clown doing in my Hospital Room?
Humor-based positive psychology inerventions
Joyful challenge - Practical methods to increase joy and flow at work (workshop)
Surprise in jokes
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch
13:30 - 14:30 Proyer:
The dark side of laughter
Hospital Clowning and the Four Humors: A Workshop on the History and Uses of the Four Classical Humors - For Clowns and Other People
2 pm:
Cultural Contexts for the Study of Humor and Aging
Psycho- and neurolinguistic studies of humour comprehension (II)
14:30 - 15:30 Kersten:
Humor and the Political Sphere
What to Look Forward to in the Middle of Life
The Role of Language in Humour
15:30 - 16:00 Coffee break Coffee break Coffee break
16:00-17:00 Milner Davis:
Exploring the Nature and Effects of Political Satire
(8 Talks)
(8 Talks)
Humor & Artificial Intelligence
17:00-18:00 Kotthoff:
Indexicality and gender in performing female comic figures
Assessment of humour and laughter: Where do we stand?
18:00-18:30 Meet the lecturer Meet the lecturer ending session
18:30     Dinner