"It is fundamentally the recognition of similarity that facilitates adaptability, not, as is often presumed, dissimilarity or deviation, which could lead to the adoption of entirely inappropriate new qualities or entities."
Clarke is keen to clarify the scope and nature of the theory further. "Humour is effectively an information-processing system, and is consequently applicable to any data, whether externally perceived or internally stored. Having recognized this, and having identified the details of what it is the brain wishes to process, we finally have a system that is truly universal."
Clarke is also keen to point out that the theory explains why other theories exist by describing the cognitive basis of the types of humour they identify, unifying all previous interpretations as it does so by the concept of pattern recognition. "Previous attempts at unification have failed since they have relied on combining smaller theories into a larger whole, quoting multiple mechanisms and functions as the basis of humour, rather than analysing their common elements and synthesizing a new interpretation with global relevance. Cutting and pasting doesn't make a universal theory," says Clarke. "It just makes a scrap book of other theories."
"All major interpretations of the last hundred years are explained by the activity of pattern recognition. For example, anomaly theories have generally identified humour based on qualitative or applicative recontextualization, while mock-aggression theories have recognized opposition and interpretative recontextualization. Bergsonian roboticism was founded on the identification of positive repetition and applicative recontextualization, and broader incongruity theories on the recognition of patterns of scale or locational recontextualization, often alongside those identified in anomaly. Superiority and anti-dominance theories have tended to recognize positive repetition and patterns of sca
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