Program Details

American Humor

Joseph Dorinson
History / Other

Course Description

Starting with the Catskill Mountains as a boot camp for comedians, Professor Dorinson plans to trace the transformation of American humor with four lectures. Using cartoons, power points, and recent publications, he will demonstrate the various applications of humor in giving voice to silent minorities, as well as platforms for vocal majorities. Leaders, such as Abraham Lincoln, both Roosevelts, and John F. Kennedy, have used the "bully pulpit" to gain and maintain power to win hearts, minds, and votes with both wit and wisdom.


  1. Catskill Boot Camp.
  2. Journey Outward: Radio, Film, and TV.
  3. Political Humor.
  4. Humor in Current Media.

About the Instructor

  • Joseph Dorinson has been a professor in the History Department at Long Island University since 1966. Dorinson has written the book, Kvetching and Shpritzing: Jewish Humor in American Popular Culture(2015), and has co-edited the book, Jackie Robinson: Race, Sports and the American Dream (1999). He has written numerous articles on a variety of subjects concerning his beloved borough of Brooklyn, focusing on athletic heroes, sports history, film history, politics, humor, and ethnicity. He has organized conferences at LIU on Jackie Robinson (1997), Brooklyn (1998), Paul Robeson (1998) and Basketball, (2001) at St. Francis College in Brooklyn. He was inducted into the Brooklyn Jewish Historical Initiative Hall of Fame on Nov. 14, 2019.

Upcoming programs presented by Joseph Dorinson.

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