City of Laughter by Vic Gatrell
Publication Date: 2006-11-28
Between 1770 and 1830, London was the world's largest and richest city, the center of hectic social ferment and spectacular sexual liberation. City of Laughter chronicles the rise and fall of a great tradition of ridicule and of the satirical, humorous, and widely circulated prints that sustained it. Focusing not on the polished wit upon which polite society prided itself, but rather on malicious, sardonic and satirical humor--humor that was bawdy, knowing and ironic--Vic Gatrell explores what this tradition says about Georgian views of the world and about their own pretensions. City of Laughter offers a brilliantly original panorama of the era, providing a ground-breaking reappraisal of a period of change and a unique account of the origins of our attitudes toward sex, celebrity and satire today.