chapter  10
The General Theory of Verbal Humor
BySalvatore Attardo
Pages 17

The General Theory of Verbal Humor (GTVH) and the Semantic-Script Theory of Humor (SSTH) have been defined as the "two most influential linguistic humor theories of the last two decades". The GTVH was first presented in 1991, with the publication of Attardo and Raskin. The GTVH is an expansion of Raskin's SSTH, but it is also a part of Attardo's taxonomy of textual relationships. In Attardo's taxonomy, jokes could entertain relationships with other texts based on resemblance at the textual level, but also in relation to other texts. The GTVH was created to address these two issues, with a heavy emphasis on the second one. The GTVH was born out of the observation that the SSTH, despite its obvious advantages over other linguistic theories of humor, was not a complete theory. This solution was accomplished by the introduction of four other parameters, which, along with the script opposition, rounded up the six knowledge resources.