Ideologies in Nigerian Stand-up Comedy
The bond between language and ideology has caught the attention of discourse analysts. Investigating this bond, discourse analysts have further demonstrated that everyday interactions are embedded in and with different ideologies. Likewise, the performance of humour is motivated by the interlocutors’ ideological inclinations. On the strength of these propositions, this study attempts a critical analysis of the ideologies in selected Nigerian stand-up comedy routines (NSC), with particular reference to Fairclough and Wodak’s notions of ideology in discourse. Routines were purposively selected from editions of “Night of a Thousand Laughs” (NTL), the earliest stand-up event and a stand-up comedy road show in Nigeria, so as to focus on the performances of practicing and professional stand-up comedians in the country. Two categories of ideologies were found in NSC routines: the first relates to the art of comedy performance while the second relates to the country’s sociocultural context. In the first category, the comedians project stand-up comedy as a “dignified” profession, while in the second, they draw from sociocultural beliefs in order to project their ideologies about gender, ethnicity and the political class.
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