Leeds, United Kingdom

Comedy, Performance and British Culture

when 3 July 2021 - 17 July 2021
language English
duration 2 weeks
credits 5 EC
fee GBP 1820

Have you ever wondered how jokes work, why so many people find cats funny, or whether humour has the power to bring about political change? This module is about asking big, serious questions about the things people laugh at. It will provide an introduction to some classic theories of humour, including those of Sigmund Freud, Henri Bergson and Mikhail Bakhtin, as well as some more recent feminist responses to these theories. You will watch extracts of comedy performance, including examples from stand-up comedy, television sit-com, satirical cabaret, and devised theatre. You will take part in group discussion and a practical workshop on joke writing. Comedy has long been considered an important part of British cultural life. But how have recent political upheavals changed the way people respond to jokes, and the people that tell them? And how is the internet affecting the way comedy is performed in everyday life? A trip to watch live comedy will give students the opportunity to reflect on these timely questions.

Please note, the Leeds International Summer School runs for four weeks (3 - 31 July 2021). You can choose to study with us for two weeks or for the full four-week programme. Each module lasts two weeks so you study one module if you choose to attend for two weeks and two modules if you choose to attend for four weeks.

Course leader

Emma Bennett

Target group

Undergraduate/Bachelor students

Credits info

5 EC
The module is worth 10 Leeds credits = 5 ECTS. You can transfer the credits earned back to your home degree subject to approval.

Fee info

GBP 1820: Includes tuition, accommodation, breakfast and lunch, Monday - Friday, academic field trip, weekend cultural excursions, social programme and premium gym membership.


Scholarships worth £500 are available for students with good academic standing to help pay your fees. You can apply as part of your application to LISS.