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Extended Audio Sample Humorists: From Hogarth to Noël Coward Audiobook, by Paul Johnson Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Paul Johnson Narrator: Clive Chafer Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2010 ISBN: 9781455198108
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In Intellectuals, Paul Johnson offered a fascinating portrait of the minds that have shaped the modern world. In Creators, he examined a host of outstanding and prolific creative spirits. And in Heroes, he brought together a galaxy of legendary figures from the annals of Western history. Now, Johnson turns his impressive intellect and piercing insight to the greatest wits in the history of the Western world.

His is a selective survey across history, and includes a diverse cast of legendary humorists who got a grand kick out of life, including Benjamin Franklin and the Marx Brothers, Charles Dickens and Damon Runyon, W. C. Fields and Samuel Johnson, William Hogarth and James Thurber. Including dark humor, broad satire, bawdy wit, biting sarcasm, and more, this entertaining and erudite collection brings to life great minds who reflected on life’s follies, pretensions, and foibles with that greatest of gifts: humor.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “This book’s long view, and its deep eccentricities, are what give it a burnished glow. You’ll want to consume it with good Scotch and (what the hell) maybe even a pipe…It’s a pleasure to sit around the gently crackling fire that is Mr. Johnson’s mind.”

    New York Times

  • “A tour de force…A remarkable achievement.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “A magnificent achievement…brilliantly combines broad sweep with extraordinary detail.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Johnson masterfully weaves a narrative line among the figures, many of whom don’t spring to mind as comic, with a deep appreciation for their wit in writing, filmmaking, painting, and living.”

    Booklist (starred review)

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shaon | 2/27/2011

    " Humor tends to be very personal and cultural. It is interesting to see the choice of subjects used to illustrate the humorists - bare bottoms & pie throwing. The choices seem to be between "chaos" humor and one liners. But then I have always heard that comedy is hard. "

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About the Author
Author Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson, British author and historian, is the author of many books, including Modern Times, A History of the Jews, Intellectuals, The Birth of the Modern, and The Quest for God, which have been translated into many languages. He has been a frequent contributor to the Daily Telegraph, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Spectator, and other newspapers and magazines. He has lectured to academic, business, and political audiences all over the world.

About the Narrator

Clive Chafer is a professional actor, director, producer, and theater instructor. Originally from England and educated at Leeds and Exeter universities, he has performed and directed at many theaters in the San Francisco area, where he makes his home, and elsewhere in the US. In 1993 he founded TheatreFIRST, Oakland’s professional theater company, where he served as artistic director until 2008.