20
Mar
10

Stewart Lee: Germans Kicked Away My Comedy Crutches

I can attest that the linguistic quirks of German, the only foreign language in which I have any training, do stack the deck against comedy as practiced by English speakers. The structural precision of German sentences and compound words serves to drain potential confusion from speech – and with it a major source of easy comedy. English monologist Stewart Lee wrote eloquently on the problem in The Guardian some years ago, not as a complaint, but as a paean to writing about ideas instead of relying on the flexibilities of the English language for lazy humor. Terrific piece from a terrific performer.

Unrelated Lee clip below for the uninitiated.

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