TED Conversations

Brittney Stewart

Special Education Aide, education

This conversation is closed.

What role does satire play in today's society?

Throughout history, we've had a Modest Proposal, by J. Swift, Candide by Voltaire, what role does Satire continue to play in the world we live in. Does it impact government, or society as a whole? How important is it?


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Oct 8 2011: I think several prime examples of satire today are Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, and The Onion New Network, which have profound political effects; I went to the Rally to Restore Sanity, hosted by Jon and Colbert. There were thousands and thousands of people from all over the country gathered on the mall.

    Literature such as Slaughterhouse-five by Kurt Vonegut and Hitchhikers Guide are often read in school or for pleasure by kids. I know I was affected by both.

    I've found satire has a significant, yet under-appreciated role in shaping our society. It is a powerful means of persuasion. I find it often leads to a more sophisticated approach to understanding the world.
    • thumb
      Oct 8 2011: They're exactly who I'm referring to! I'm so envious, I watched the Rally to Restore Sanity/and or Fear, and I thought it was just brilliant. When they did the Noone more American than me song, I rewinded it so many times.

      I value very much the fact that I live in a country that not only withstands satire, but encourages it. Too many people in the world are stifled, and unable to criticize their governments.

      It baffles me sometimes that satire is unappreciated in almost inverse proportion to its true significance.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.