Various studies exist on the social functions of humour and such studies have been carried out in diverse fields that range from the humanities to the sciences. In linguistics specifically, research shows that humour has been studied from the perspectives of syntax, pragmatics and semantics; moreover, there is a dearth of studies on the creation of humour through phonological processes. Therefore, this study aims to investigate humour and how it is achieved using phonological processes. The study engages mainly qualitative methods of analysis. Five comedy skits were purposively selected from Folarin Falana’s (Falz the Bahd Guy) eleven collections. These were chosen on the basis of their internet popularity among Nigerians; this popularity was determined on the basis of the rates of downloading the skits. McGraw & Warren’s (2010) Benign Violation Theory was used to account for the phonological violations in the comedies. The various phonological processes that were violated include liaison, deletion, insertion, monophthongisation, coalescence and vowel strengthening. It is argued that the phonological distortions are deliberately made to achieve humour in these Nigerian comedies, especially when the high educational level of the artist is considered. Also, there anti-Anglicism and pro-Nigerianism in the data as the artist identifies himself with Nigeria(ns) and creates a niche for himself in the entertainment industry using the phonological peculiarities among Nigerians’ language use, especially the Yoruba tribe. He also creates different personalities to project different messages which are not only peculiar to Nigeria but to the world, using these personalities to portray people’s feelings and views of the world and how these influence their attitudes.
Attardo, S. (1994). Linguistic Theories of Humour. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
Attardo, S. (2011). ‘Humour’, in Zienkowski, J., Ostman, J., Verschueren, J. (eds.), Discursive Pragmatics, Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company, pp. 135-155.
Attardo, S., Wagner, M. M. & Urios-Aparisi, E. (eds.) (2013). Prosody and Humour. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.
Clarke, M. (2017). ‘5 ways humour reduces stress and anxiety’. Psychology of Humor, April 19, 2017. Retrieved from http://www.psychologyofhumor.com/2017/04/19/5-ways-humour-reduces-stress-and-anxiety-guest-article-by-marcus-clarke/.
Cousins, N. (1979). Anatomy of an Illness. New York: Norton.
Dolitsky, M. (1992). ‘Aspects of the unsaid in humour’. Humor: International Journal of Humor Research 5(1/2), pp. 33-43.
Dynel, M. (2009). ‘Beyond a joke: types of conversational humour’. Language and Linguistics Compass 3(5), pp. 1284-1299.
Filani, I. (2017). ‘Politics of humour and political humour in Nigerian stand-up comedy’. Israeli Journal for Humour Research 6 (1), pp. 93–109.
Giegerich, H.J. (1992). English Phonology: An Introduction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Gimson, A.C. (2001). Gimson’s Pronunciation of English. London: Arnold Publishers.
Giora, R. (2001). ‘Irony and its discontent’, in Schram, D.H. & Steen, G. (eds.), The Psychology and Sociology of Literature: in Honour of Elrud Ibsch, John Benjamins Publishing Company.
Hetzron, R. (1991). ‘On the structure of punchlines’. Humor: International Journal of Humor Research, 4(1), pp. 1-108.
Jones, D. (2011). Cambridge English Pronouncing Dictionary. P. Roach, J. Setter and J. Esling (eds.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 18th edition.
Knight, N. K. (2008). ‘Still cool…and American too!: an SFL analysis of deferred bonds in internet messaging humour’. Systemic Functional Linguistic in Use: Odense Working Papers in Language and Communication 29, pp. 481-502,
Krikmann, V. (2006). ‘Contemporary linguistic theories of humour’. Folklore. 33: 27-58. Retrieved March 16, 2013 from http://dx.doi.org/10.7592/FEJF2006.33.kriku,
Lew, R. (1997). ‘Towards a taxonomy of linguistic jokes’. Studia Anglica Posnaniensia 31, pp. 123-152.
McGraw, A.P. & Warren, C. (2010). ‘Benign violations: Making immoral behaviour funny’. Psychological Science, 21, pp. 1141-1149.
McGraw, P. (2011) ‘The importance of humour research: a serious non-serious research topic’. Psychology today, September 14, 2011. [Online] https://www.psychologytoday.com/intl/blog/the-humor-code/201109/the-importance-humor-research. [Accessed 11th December, 2018.]
McGraw, P. & Warren, C. (2015). ‘What makes things humorous’. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 112 (23), pp. 7105-7106.
Mulder, M.P. & Nijholt, A. (2002). Humour Research: State of the Art. Enschede: Centre for Telematics and Information Technology, University of Twente.
Norrick, N.R. (1989). ‘Intertextuality in humour’. Humor: International Journal of Humor Research 2(2), pp. 117-140.
NotJustOk (2014). ‘The 10 most gifted rappers in Nigeria 2014: #9 – Falz’. [Online] https://notjustok.com/features/10-gifted-rappers-nigeria-2014-9-falz/. [Accessed 23rd November, 2015.]
Oaks, D.D. (1994). ‘Creating structural ambiguities in humour: getting English grammar to cooperate’. Humor: International Journal of Humor Research 7(4), pp. 377-401.
Osisanwo, A.A. (2012). Fundamentals of English Phonetics and Phonology. Lagos: Femolus-Fetop Publishers.
Sen, A. (2012). ‘Humour analysis and qualitative research’. Social Research Update 63. Department of Sociology, University of Surrey: Guildford, pp. 1-4.
Servaite, L. 2005. ‘The anatomy of a joke’. Tiltai 4, pp. 81-85.
Theroux, P. (1989). My Secret History. New York: Putnam Adult.
Veatch, T. C. (1998). ‘A theory of humour’. Humor: International Journal of Humor Research 11(2), pp. 161-215.
Westwood, R.I. & Rhodes, C. (eds.) (2007). Humour, Work and Organisation. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge.
Whipple, C. & Calvert, S. (2008). ‘The connection between laughter, humour, and good health’. UK Cooperative Extension Service. University of Kentucky: Health Education through Extension Leadership.