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Volume 3, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 2045-5852
  • E-ISSN: 2045-5860



Photo caption competitions have existed for about 100 years and are well embedded in popular culture. Adopting a very fine grained examination, this article looks at a new caption competition running in a very popular New Zealand magazine. An overall description of the first twenty episodes is provided, discussion then focuses on a key feature of the photos that form the first part of the competition. They feature very visible hand gestures and embodied expressions, which seem to appeal to the competition’s organizers because they provide a readily understandable and economic platform for directing competitors in their caption-construction. By close attention to several examples, the discussion shows how indeed these hand gestures and embodied expressions are an excellent resource for the typical use of incongruity in accomplishing humour.


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): categorization; embodied gestures; humour; incongruity; ordinary; visual
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