Comedic Relief



George Carlin’s life seemed to be full of laughter, heartache, and troubled times. One thing that was evident was the Discourses that shaped his life. He grew up on the run and in the midst of his parents divorce.  Throughout the story Carlin describes conflicting identities and the Discourses that led him to be the successful he had become. For example, the mother was “spoiled, self-centered, strong-willed, and demanding”. The mother grew up “always knowing who she was and what she could do. The mother was independent, yet depended on her sons to help with the judgment and approval of the outside world. Through the mother’s primary Discourse, she learned that judgment is everywhere and concluded “social rules and conventions in America are set by women”. She tries to portray this as well as guilt on her children, which repels Carlin from his mother. Although Carlin’s mother failed to make “something out of him”, she did give him what he deems “that love of words”.  To me it kind of seems like Carlin’s mother married his father for his money. The text does argue that they had a “romantic love”, but from Carlin’s perspective it makes it seem like they weren’t true loves. This factor also adds to Carlin’s discourse: the fact of growing up without a father. Despite this, Carlin exemplifies respect for his father. He talks about how his father was a popular public speaker, a big part of his Discourse. One thing Carlin truly respects and takes from his father is the ability to define ones “self-worth in terms of the universe at large”.  I believe Carlin’s primary Discourse is a under-the-radar combination of his mother and father. His father gave him the ability to speak well publically, and his mother contributed the ease of language as well as the love of words. He puts his own twist on the Discourse in regards to his comedy and religion. Without a doubt, he breaks the norms with the “foul language” and slurs for comedic relief, which indirectly expresses his rejection of his parent’s Discourses. Carlin’s story was very interesting and proved to be a good example of how our Discourses change throughout our life, based on our pasts and experiences. All in all, I enjoyed reading part of his book. The sarcastic, detailed writing embraced serious topics but were lightened by Carlin’s tone. In my opinion, he uses comedy as an escape from all the hardships in his life.


Carlin Reading Notes 9:7:13

4 thoughts on “Comedic Relief

  1. I think that his parent’s were a big influence on his discourse too. His father being a speaker and his mother’s love of language affected the way that his discourse is today. Also, his rebelling of being like his mother wanted him to be affected his discourse and Discourse.

  2. I also agree with you on his parents being a huge influence on his discourse. Even though he never really wanted to be anything like his parents he ended up being more like them in the end.

  3. I felt like it was interesting how his Discourse became pretty much the opposite of what his mother wanted. I also thought that it was strange that his Discourse has some similarities to his father’s Discourse, even though his father was abusive. I agree that his families Discourses affected him.

  4. Like most people, parents are a large influence on their discourse. I agree with how you described this influence in being that his mother loved language and his father was a speaker, so this ultimately became who he was.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s