Which Countries Have The Best Sense Of Humor?

Which Countries Have The Best Sense Of Humor?

Jan 19
Which Countries Have The Best Sense Of Humor?

Ideas about comedy and humor can be very specific to geographic location. Different people will find things funny depending on what part of town they live in or what region of a country they come from. However, some countries are famous for having a national sense of humor or an ironic approach to life. Here, in no particular order, are a handful of countries with populations who love a good laugh. Keep in mind though that different cultures find wildly different things funny. What plays in the American heartland, for example, might baffle someone living on an island in Indonesia. Most countries have a pretty decent sense of humor when it comes to the sometimes ridiculous vagaries of daily living- it just might not resemble yours.

5 Countries With A Sense Of HumorEarth globe

1. Canada

Canada must be one of the few countries in the world to build a comedy museum. But what does it say that the Just for Laughs Museum, which also served as ground zero for Montreal’s annual comedy festival, closed its doors in 2010? Still, Canadians generally are known for their quirky, understated or offbeat humor. They’re also gracious on those (frequent) occasions when they are the butt of someone else’s (usually an American’s) joke.

2. United Kingdom

British comedy has historically been built around situational humor (these people have been through a lot in 35,000 years and have trained themselves to see the humor in everything from the weather to quinoa) and wacky exaggeration. They are masters of wordplay and ironic dialogue on every level of society and use language as a means of humorous political commentary like no one else. Add to that, the Brits also have a deep appreciation for physical comedy – think Monty Python, Mr. Bean, the list goes on. Taking the piss – humor that involves appearing to be serious but actually being anything but is a peculiarly British specialty.

3. India

Although private humor is rampant in India, publicly things tend to be more pompous and self-important and a national sense of humor often seems to be lacking. That may be changing with younger generations of Indians who are using the Internet for satirical and comic purposes in record numbers. It also helps that second generation North American comics such as Aziz Ansari and Russell Peters are spinning relate-able tales of East/West cultural confusion.

4. Denmark

If you think weird is good then Danes definitely have a great sense of humor. They prefer sarcasm and the dark and uncomfortable side of humor rather than the jokes, witticisms or gags that Americans and other nationalities find funny. Denmark’s long-standing tradition of freedom of speech is continually being pushed to the max. Even on the world stage, there is nothing sacred, their sense of dark humor can lead them to places where other nationalities might fear to go. One example could be Danish filmmaker Lars von Trier telling a room full of journalists at Cannes that he was a Nazi. He later tried to explain, “It was a stupid joke. But that’s the kind of humor I use when I talk to my friends, who know me and know I’m not a Nazi.”

5. MalaysiaAsia Malaysia

Crowned the “world’s funniest person” in 2016, Malaysian stand-up comedian Harith Iskander is proof that this Asian island nation knows how to tickle the global funny bone. The contest, which was sponsored by the US comedy club Laugh Factory and hosted by the likes of Chris Rock and Jay Leno, invited fans from around the world to vote online. Iskander credits his win to using “local material with an international context.” Semi-finalists included comedians from Greece, Israel, India, and the Philippines.