Is laughter always related to humor?

Thus far in class, we have discussed humor and laughter as being intimately connected.  However, I’ve often found myself laughing when, for example, I’m happy, not just when I find something funny.  Or I’ve found myself watching a comedy show and finding things clever, or insulting, or random, but not laughing.  So why do we laugh?  Is it simply because everyone has a different sense of humor?

When I think of jokes that I like, I really enjoy things that clever, witty, or punny.  None of the theories discussed so far necessarily cover that, except maybe relief theory (Morreall mentioned eutrapelia, referring to wittiness, and humor as playful relaxation).  One of my favorite jokes is: “Why do we have nipples? Because without them boobs would have no point.”  I think it’s funny, but I didn’t laugh when I heard it.  However, even though I can’t explain why, Sail Cat (video below) and real-life Lady and the Tramp (video below) almost always makes me laugh.  So why do we laugh when we do?  And is laughter always related to humor?


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