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Download The Pun Also Rises: How the Humble Pun Revolutionized Language, Changed History, and Made Wordplay More Than Some Antics Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Pun Also Rises: How the Humble Pun Revolutionized Language, Changed History, and Made Wordplay More Than Some Antics Audiobook, by John Pollack Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.73 out of 53.73 out of 53.73 out of 53.73 out of 53.73 out of 5 3.73 (11 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John Pollack Narrator: Pete Larkin Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: August 2011 ISBN: 9781452673790
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The pun is commonly dismissed as the lowest form of wit, and punsters are often unpopular for their obsessive wordplay. But such attitudes are relatively recent developments. In The Pun Also Rises, John Pollack-a former World Pun Champion and presidential speechwriter for Bill Clinton-explains why such wordplay is significant: It both revolutionized language and played a pivotal role in making the modern world possible. Skillfully weaving together stories and evidence from history, brain science, pop culture, literature, anthropology, and humor, The Pun Also Rises is an authoritative yet playful exploration of a practice that is common, in one form or another, to virtually every language on earth. At once entertaining and educational, this engaging book answers fundamental questions: Just what is a pun, and why do people make them? How did punning impact the development of human language, and how did that drive creativity and progress? And why, after centuries of decline, does the pun still matter? Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • Anyone with an interest in language is going to find this book fascinating. David Crystal, author of How Language Works
  • “A compelling exegesis on what puns are and why they matter.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “The best books on language are the ones that encourage us to reexamine what we think we know, and The Pun Also Rises does exactly that.”

    Boston Globe

  • “A fun, cogent argument in favor of a dubious, often-damned art.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Harry | 10/8/2011

    " This is, I think, a more important book than its title suggests. There is an implicit argument threaded throughout the book that language is indispensable to thought, and that playing with language is key to creativity. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Holly | 9/29/2011

    " "Pun-derful."

    I love puns, so it's no surprise I loved this book. But it really is a well-researched, well-written, and delightful book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dean | 9/14/2011

    " Well-researched, engaging, relevant, and tastefully presented. Great read on a bright, punny morning. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tracey | 9/8/2011

    " It was very scolarly..didn't yield as many puns as I had hoped "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rachel | 9/7/2011

    " amusing and clever at times, i jumped around but it was definitely not interesting enough to read all the way through... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gary | 9/2/2011

    " Who would've thought -- a book about puns that is serious and yet also full of very topic which it covers. A fun read if you have ever punned, been punned or punished! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Debra | 8/24/2011

    " A short history of the pun in various societies. With, of course, some groaningly bad examples. This is NOT a collection of puns, though, but more a book on language. If you are looking for a collection, see Bennett Cerf among others. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kent | 8/20/2011

    " Fascinating. In addition to giving a thorough history of the pun, Pollack makes a cogent, credible and creative argument for why it is NOT the lowest form of humor, but instead one of the most creative and important. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Margie | 8/5/2011

    " Three and a half stars. A short book, fun and interesting. Definitely focuses on the development of language in relation to puns. It's not at all a collection of puns, though it's fun to find the author's puns slipped in throughout the book. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jon | 7/21/2011

    " I think I disagree with the central thesis of this book...i.e. I don't think puns are all that important. It feels like the historical narrative is a bit forced and selective...but I did enjoy the examples of punning. That made me laugh. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laura | 6/11/2011

    " A fun little book - and I'm sure I didn't even get all the puns! Mom, you should read this! I came up with a pretty good pun today - on my blog, I told Jon we were, "all shook up" by the earthquake! :) "

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About the Author

John Pollack is the author of Cork Boat and The Pun Also Rises. In addition to working at the White House, John Pollack has spent more than a decade as a communications consultant for Fortune 100 companies and public sector leaders. Earlier, he worked as a Capitol Hill speechwriter, foreign correspondent, and project manager at the Henry Ford—a museum of American innovation. He lives in New York City.

About the Narrator

Pete Larkin has narrated dozens of audiobook titles, won five Earphones Awards, and been a finalist in 2012 for the prestigious Audie Award for best narration. He has been praised for his expert ability to speak in multiple accents. He is also an on-camera host and accomplished voice-over artist for hundreds of commercials and promos for a variety of companies, corporations, and governmental agencies. He was the public address announcer for the New York Mets and has worked as a radio jockey in New York, Baltimore, and Washington, DC.