Laughter is a funny thing: it’s a physical and emotional reflex without an obvious purpose. Humor is funnier still: it is a network of social and cultural cues we’ve developed in order to trigger this reflex. This series of four posts explores the scientific and philosophical theories of why we laugh.

Seriously, Though: What is Laughter? - A look at what laughter does to our brain and body, plus why it's so hard to stop once you start. ---- Seriously Though: Part 1 of 4 ----
Seriously, Though: Do we laugh to get along? - Laughing brings people together; then again, jokes can be derisive and mean. How might these opposing forces make communities stronger and shed some light onto why humans evolved a sense of humor at all? ---- Seriously Though: Part 2 of 4 ----
Seriously, Though: Do we laugh just to let off some steam? - A good laugh can make us feel mentally and emotionally refreshed. Could this be a clue as to why humor evolved? ---- Seriously Though: Part 3 of 4 ----
Seriously, Though: Do we laugh to learn? - Are the categories "funny strange" and "funny ha-ha" an accident of language, or could there be a connection between humor and learning? ----Seriously Though: Part 4 of 4----

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