OT: Sarcasm and irony

bryan rasmussen rasmussen.bryan at gmail.com
Tue Oct 10 10:50:53 CEST 2006


On 10/10/06, Steve Holden <steve at holdenweb.com> wrote:
> bryan rasmussen wrote:
> >>>>E. g. [in Java there is] no operator overloading, but "+"
> >>>>concatenation of strings. What if you'd like to implement your own
> >>>>string-derived class? Ah, never mind. Operator overloading is
> >>>>bad(tm) ;) <= Irony, definitely
> >>>
> >>>Definitely? That one strikes me more as sarcasm.
> >>
> >
> > Well irony originally started out as a very specific concept of the
> > Ancient Greek drama, this is what we nowadays refer to as Dramatic
> > Irony but it is the original irony. Irony then became a literary
> > concept for plot elements similar to Dramatic irony in books, or a
> > weaker type of the Dramatic irony found in the plays of Shakespeare.
> > People then noticed that life was at times ironic in the literary
> > manner. Nowadays the use of the word irony has degenerated to by
> > pretty much synonymous with sarcasm.
> >
> ... in America. It's well-known among Brits that Americans don't
> understand irony. They can be pretty oblique when it come to sarcasms
> too, for that matter.

is that '....in America' meant to be an addendum to what I said, as in
this is the situation in America and not elsewhere? If so I should
probably point out that I am writing from Denmark and was thinking
specifically of a situation where a dane told me they were being
'ironic' (when what they meant, obviously, was that they were being
ironical), when I asked what they meant by that they said "saying the
opposite of what I mean" I responded: "so, in other words, what you
mean by irony is 'sarcasm'" She responded "yes, that's what it means"

She had a degree in communications. I also know a few number of brits.
The quality of their wit is not as yet so rarified that I must strain
after its meaning.

Cheers,
Bryan Rasmussen



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