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    #1

    Question Sarcasm or irony

    Hi there,

    I was wondering if the sentence below is an example of sarcasm or irony.

    Einstein entered the classroom. (Our aim is to refer to a stupid person)

    If it is sarcasm, is it possible to change it into irony?

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Venus.jam; 10-Oct-2016 at 15:54.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    Either way, it would only work if the listeners/readers knew that the person being referred to was viewed as "stupid" (not a very nice thing to say about someone) or if the use of "Einstein" to refer to that person has already been established.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #3

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    That depends on which definitions you're using. To me, sarcasm is a type of irony. Yes, it's sarcasm.

    See Verbal irony and sarcasm:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irony

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    #4

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    That depends on which definitions you're using. To me, sarcasm is a type of irony. Yes, it's sarcasm.

    See Verbal irony and sarcasm:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irony
    Thanks a lot. You know, in the definition of irony it is said that the use of irony does not hurt. But, the use of sarcasm does. So, my question is that if "Einstein entered the room" is sarcasm and its use can hurt someone, is it possible to use it in an ironic way in which no one hurts by its use?

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    #5

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    It would depend on your relationship with the person- if the person were a close friend, it could be said without intending to hurt or being taken as rude.

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    #6

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    It would depend on your relationship with the person- if the person were a close friend, it could be said without intending to hurt or being taken as rude.
    Excuse me, so if for example "Einstein entered the room" (our target is a stupid person) appear on an test and we are asked to find the appropriate figure of speech that has been used in it, we cannot simply decide whether it is an irony or sarcasm. But, we should also know about the participants, their relationships, etc. as well. Right?
    Moreover, can even tone of voice make an ironic statement an example of sarcasm and vice versa?
    would you please give an example?

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    #7

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    Tone of voice has a lot to do with with sarcasm.

    As far as a test question goes, if a question asked "Is this irony or sarcasm?" and simply gave "Einstein entered the room" as the example sentence, it would be a very poor test question. Without any context, "Einstein entered the room" is simply an English statement in the past tense.

    For it to be sarcastic, I would expect it to be said as the person in question entered the room. I can imagine this fairly unpleasant situation:

    A group of students is in a classroom. One member of the group is missing - a boy called Simon, considered by his classmates as rather unintelligent. The door to the classroom opens and Simon walks in. One of the other students says loudly (perhaps in a Forrest Gump-style voice) "Uh-oh. Watch out, everyone. Einstein's here!" Everybody else in the room laughs. Simon probably doesn't.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #8

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    I think you're given enough information. You call a person 'Einstein' because he isn't too bright. That is meant to be hurtful. So, if the choices included 'sarcasm' and 'irony', I would assume that the test-setter did not hold that sarcasm was based on irony, and I'd choose 'sarcasm'.

    I've never seen the utility of using 'sarcasm' where there is no irony. Sarcasm, as I grew up knowing it was saying the opposite of what one means - not simply being hurtful. Under the definition I know of, "Dummy has entered the room" is also hurtful, but it's not sarcasm.

    To get it right with both listed, you either have to know the definitions your marker is using, or you could use the reasoning in my first paragraph.

    PS: No, you can't use sarcasm in a way that is not meant to be hurtful if you define sarcasm as being hurtful.

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    #9

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    Tone of voice has a lot to do with with sarcasm.

    As far as a test question goes, if a question asked "Is this irony or sarcasm?" and simply gave "Einstein entered the room" as the example sentence, it would be a very poor test question. Without any context, "Einstein entered the room" is simply an English statement in the past tense.

    For it to be sarcastic, I would expect it to be said as the person in question entered the room. I can imagine this fairly unpleasant situation:

    A group of students is in a classroom. One member of the group is missing - a boy called Simon, considered by his classmates as rather unintelligent. The door to the classroom opens and Simon walks in. One of the other students says loudly (perhaps in a Forrest Gump-style voice) "Uh-oh. Watch out, everyone. Einstein's here!" Everybody else in the room laughs. Simon probably doesn't.

    Thanks a world. Would you please expalin what is the meaning of "forrest Gump-style voice"?

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    #10

    Re: Sarcasm or irony

    A voice sounding like Forrest Gump.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpBNAERkSqI

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