Why We Need Satire When Times Are Tough
Usually when we say of satire, we think of yet another form of entertainment. But there are plenty of theoreticians who say that satire is so much more than that. Many agree that it’s actually a key part of any healthy democracy. What makes it even more interesting is the fact that it gets a lot more popular whenever it gets tough. Why is it so and what can this fact tells us about satire as such?
The history of satire in America is a long and rich one. It can be found in the works of many artists who lived and created before the Revolutionary War. This is especially true of satirical cartoons, but there are plenty of literary examples as well. After all, Mark Twain and Benjamin Franklin are among America’s best satirists. Even they believed in the transformative power of satire as such.
Nowadays satire is an art form that can be spread like wildfire, especially thanks to social media platforms such as Twitter. This is one of the favorite communication channels for millennials, people born between the 1980s to the 2000s. They are also the main consumers of satirical works in today’s society. The movement has its leaders, of course. Stephen Colbert is one of the most popular modern satirists and a person who is responsible for most of the political education of the American youth.
Since one of the main strategies of satirical works is mocking the topic of discussion, satire as an art form thrives in tough time periods. Many fail to see the positive in this, and claim that it’s the lowest of the low when it comes to humor. But that’s a mistake in reasoning, since satire can’t create the situation it mocks. And shedding light on it, which is its purpose, can hardly be considered bad. In conclusion, we need satire when times are tough because it provides a way of letting off steam and engaging in a constructive discussion about the issue at hand.