A literary technique used to make fun of the vices of society… …for the purpose of CHANGE.
Irony: Verbal, Dramatic, Situational Hyperbole: Exaggeration to make a point. Understatement: the presentation of something as being smaller, worse, or less important than it actually is. Caricature: description of a person using exaggeration of some characteristics and oversimplification of others. Ridicule: the subjection of someone or something to contemptuous and dismissive language or behavior. Parody: an imitation of the style of a particular writer, artist, or genre with deliberate exaggeration for comic effect.
What makes satire satire? Social commentary. That is, the writer ridicules or pokes fun at certain aspects of society he or she finds repugnant in hopes of changing it. Targets for Change Vanity, hypocrisy, religion, bigotry, human vices, sentimentality, greed, celebrity worship, materialism, hubris (pride), education, government snobbery, foolishness, cruelty, insensitivity, laziness, (just to name a few)
Now that you know the elements of satire, what do you think makes satire effective? Why do writers use satire instead of criticizing the person, group or institution directly?
Uses laughter as a weapon Mixes criticism with humor… …but does not stoop to insults or abusive language Tries to get people to think critically about the issue being discussed Tries to inspire people to improve or reform the situation
Drama (Tartuffe – Moliere, The Importance of Being Earnest – Oscar Wilde ) Journalism (The Onion) Fiction (A Modest Proposal – Jonathan Swift, The Lowest Animal – Mark Twain) Poetry (The Rape of the Locke – Alexander Pope) Graphic Arts (editorial cartoons) Television programs (Saturday Night Live, The Colbert Report) Music (With God on Our Side – Bob Dylan, Weird Al)
Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update The Daily Show Scary Movie The Simpsons Political cartoons The Family Guy South Park
In order to (verb) __________, in (title of text), (author’s name) uses ____________. For example, “_______________________”. To complete the analysis, explain the author’s purpose and how the author uses satire to develop his/her criticism on society.
CUPERTINO, CA—Only a month after the much-heralded announcement of the iPhone, Apple CEO Steve Jobs confirmed that his engineers were already working around-the-clock on the touchscreen smartphone's far-superior replacement. "We looked at [the iPhone's] innovative user interface, the paradigm-shifting voicemail, the best-in-class mobile browser, and we realized we could make all that seem ridiculously outdated by the time the product becomes available to customers in June," said Jobs, who described the project as "Apple reinventing the iPhone." "When the second-generation iPhone comes out this fall, we want iPhone users to feel not just jealous, but downright foolish for owning such laughably primitive technology." Jobs also hinted that the second iPhone device would not be compatible with existing Mac computers, third-party peripherals, or any future Apple products.
In order to ridicule technology companies, in “Apple Hard At Work Making iPhone Obsolete”, the writer uses sarcasm and irony. For example, Jobs supposedly states that apple wants “ users to feel not just jealous, but downright foolish for owning such laughably primitive technology.“ What is his purpose? How does he use satire to achieve his purpose or to criticize society?
Revisit The Importance of Being Earnest and work to complete the Elements of Satire Group Scavenger Hunt. Modest Proposal Reference
In groups, comb through all three acts of The Importance of Being Earnest and find passages demonstrating satire. Identify what is being satirized, how it is being satirized (which of the elements of satire), and what Wilde may be hoping to change. ExcerptTopic being Satirized Element(s) of Satire Used Purpose/ Change in Society