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Short Synopsis
A former world pun champion's funny, erudite, and provocative exploration of puns, the people who make them, and this derided wordplay's remarkable impact on history.

Full Synopsis
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?

"Anyone with an interest in language is going to find this book fascinating." ---David Crystal, author of How Language Works

"Punderful!" ---Ben Schott, author of Schott's Original Miscellany

"This is a real treat in audio since narrator Pete Larkin seems to be having as much fun recounting Pollack's abundance of groan-producing puns, newspaper headlines, and other clever language-based witticisms as listeners will." --AudioFile

"Pete Larkin's resonant voice nicely balances this lively material, which will appeal to all etymologists, lexicographers, and language mavens." ---Library Journal Audio Review
Author Interview
John Pollack

The Pun Also Rises

How the Humble Pun Revolutionized Language, Changed History, and Made Wordplay More Than Some Antics

Author John Pollack

Narrated by Pete Larkin

Publication date Aug 1, 2011

Running time 5 hrs

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