This thesis explores the theory of comedy as social criticism through an interpretive investigation. For comedy to be a potent criticism it is important for the audience to understand the context surrounding the sketch. Without understanding the context the sketch still has the ability to be humorous, but the critique is harder to acknowledge. “White Like Me” as performed by Eddie Murphy on Saturday Night Live will be used as an example for understanding the social criticisms presented in the sketch. This will be descriptively analyzed by dissecting the three major jokes shown and then, to conclude the thesis, there will be a discussion of the dangers of not understanding context in comedy.
Jones, Abigail, "How Does Context Shape Comedy as a Successful Social Criticism as Demonstrated by Eddie Murphy’s SNL Sketch “White Like Me?”" (2012). Honors College. 58.