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Analyzing LGBTQ2S+ jokes in 30 Rock and Schitt’s Creek: a qualitative comparison study in sitcom humour

Faculty Advisor




LGBTQ2S+, jokes, sitcoms

Abstract (summary)

As LGBTQ2S+ representation increases in the media, it is important to discover if these increased narratives are also becoming more positive. Utilizing a combination of Critical Discourse and Textual Analysis, this study analyzes LGBTQ2S+ sitcom humour in 30 Rock and Schitt’s Creek to understand what patterns are found in the jokes and how findings compare. After examining connotations drawn from word choice, the presence of power dynamics, body language, and tone, findings indicated that 30 Rock contained an alarming number of negative LGBTQ2S+ jokes, with jokes fitting into three categories: using the term “lesbian” to denote frumpy appearance, using LGBTQ2S+ jokes to create a power imbalance, and erasing identity with LGBTQ2S+ negative jokes. In opposition to this, Schitt’s Creek demonstrated positive representation of LGBTQ2S+ characters and few LGBTQ2S+ specific jokes. LGBTQ2S+ stereotypes were sometimes inverted for humour, but no negative jokes occurred.

Publication Information



Item Type

Student Report




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