2008: Irony Definition

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Irony Definition
Can you stop glaring at me like that? It makes me feel really ironic.
Title text: Can you stop glaring at me like that? It makes me feel really ironic.


Ambox notice.png This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: It's IRONIC how incomplete this explanation is - Please change this comment when editing this page. Do NOT delete this tag too soon.
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progamer124 said that irony is "One of the most misused words in the entire English language". Often this misuse arises from a crude attempt at a humourous malapropism or meta-humour, such as pre-empting someone deploying a "citation needed" tag on a wikipage by using a ridiculous citation.

The most common types of irony are sarcasm (where the meaning of a word or phrase is the exact opposite of its literal definition) and paradox (a state of affairs or an event that seems deliberately contrary to what one expects). Black Hat is using the latter in his response to Cueball.

A frequent source of ridicule of citizens of the USA, is the continued misuse of the word irony. The classic example of this is the song Ironic by Alanis Morissette which consists of a list of unfortunate and annoying events, all incorrectly assigned the status of "Ironic". The criticism of this song as being typical of Americans' inability to understand irony is itself ironic as Alanis Morissette is Canadian.


Ambox notice.png This transcript is incomplete. Please help editing it! Thanks.
[Black Hat and Cueball are walking together, with Black Hat walking behind Cueball with his arms spread out. Cueball is visibly upset, as evidenced by the squiggle floating above his head and his balled up fists.]
Black Hat: It's ironic how you know the definition of irony, yet I'm the one in this conversation who's happy.

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Adding to the irony are the complaints from overeducated drama fans criticizing common uses of the term, assuming that "dramatic irony" is the only valid definition. Search "alanis morissette ironic misuse" for lots of fun with semantics and pseudo-intellectualism. I suspect that Randall is poking fun at the critics, rather than those who misuse the term. 17:56, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

  • I agree it's poking fun at the critics. The explanation should include correct examples of irony that even non-USA pedantics agree meet the definition. 19:03, 18 June 2018 (UTC)Pat

Should mention be made that a possible motivation of this comic is President Trump's misuse of the word "ironic" 11 days earlier in a tweet? [1] Heshy (talk) 18:40, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

Eleven days ago seems a bit distant to be an inspiration. It's not like this comic is infrequently updated.... 23:51, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

If sarcasm is a type of irony, is this question ironic? 20:19, 18 June 2018 (UTC)

Since when is Canada not part of America? :) RandalSchwartz (talk) 02:09, 19 June 2018 (UTC)

Incorrect interpretation

> The most common types of irony are sarcasm and paradox. Black Hat is using the latter

I think this interpretation misses the point. Whatever about sarcasm and paradox being examples of irony (I'm pretty sure sarcasm at least is not, paradox I'm not sure about either - irony is more about metacommentary than direct paradox), but Black Hat's statement isn't paradoxical anyway. Black Hat is using the term "irony" incorrectly, both in the comic and the title text. In the comic, be states that Cueball knows the definition of irony, implying that he, Black Hat does not. Cueball is angry that Black Hat is using "ironic" incorrectly.

Furthermore, the extra meta layer is that while Black Hat's statement is not ironic, the situation in the comic is ironic in itself: it's ironic that the Black Hat is choosing to use ironic in various statements even though he seems to imply that he knows full well that he does not know the definition of the word.

-- 06:45, 19 June 2018 (UTC)