Ben Lewis

A very readable exploration of a british journalist, who researches the true history of humor under communism. Said humor is known to be the funniest and most cynical humor created by oppressed humans that we know of ('Why, despite all shortages, was the toilet paper in East Germany always 2-ply? Because they had to send a copy of everything they did to Russia.'). Many argue that it helped bring communism to its end. Lewis put this hypothesis to a test and this book is the well-written tale of this test, in which he speaks to many interesting old people all over Eastern Europe (and his eastern-german ex-girlfriend), sprinkled with many jokes. I learned even more about communism history on the way. Maybe not a coincidence that it works well when a resident of one great humor-culture (Britain) researches another great humor-culture.

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