Humor In George Saunders's Essay 'I Can Speak'

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George Saunders achieves humor in his “I can speak” essay by using the unexpected. Using the unexpected for humor was mentioned by Murray Davis and Henri Bergson in essays they wrote about humor. Davis believes that humor has to do with disrupting a system, such as in a series of events, where something does not fit or belong. Bergson also believes that humor comes from the unexpected, yet he describes it differently, he sees it as the involuntary action in an event, he uses the example of a person who trips while walking down a sidewalk. You can see these ideas in George Saunders’s essay. Murray’s concept of humor has to do with the unexpected in a series of events; one of his ideas has to do with systems and incongruities. In his piece…show more content…
In most people’s minds a simple apology letter from a business is template on a computer in which your name and problem will be inserted into the blanks. We expect them to be short, to the point and most definitely mass produced. George Saunders turns this system completely upside down, which brings laughter out of the reader. First of all the apology letter is written by an employee of the business during his lunch break- this never happens, a business man does not take his own personal time to write an apology letter to a customer. Also this apology letter was very personal, another thing we do not expect to come out of an apology letter. We expect it to say sorry for the inconvenience, we send you our greatest apologies, the end. Not in this case, the employee Rick goes on to tell the recipient of the letter about his personal life, he compares his use of the newest model of the I can speak to show her how much happier she would be with a newer model. In most cases she would just be told the features of the new model in the letter, but rick makes sure she knows how it has affected his life personally. He even goes on to call her foolish in a sense he says in the letter

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