At The Library of Humour Studies anyone can research humour and comedy, for free. This place is not only the first humour library in Indonesia, but also a center for humour studies for various disciplines and professions.
Have you ever tried going through the day without chuckle? You’ll probably find that it’s downright impossible. Realized or not, chuckles occur much more frequently that other commonly researched emotions like regret, pride, and shame. As humans, we typically avoid pain and always welcome pleasure. Hence, the pursuit of pleasure influences many of our daily decisions. One of which is by looking for something funny or humorous. Bookmarking our favourite comedian shows, looking for tv shows that make us laugh, entering a circle of friends who like to joke around or looking for a doctor or psychologist who has a good sense of humour (much needed!).
Indeed, humour is an attitude that tends to evoke a sense of joy and often triggers laughter. The term comes from an ancient Latin medical term, which teaches that the balance of fluids in the human body, known as humours, is regulated by human health and emotions. And, because humour is valued by people, humour is everywhere. Businesses are constantly creating funny contents in order to get people’s attention and entertain us. Because experts know the use of humour can develop a better understanding of language comprehension has led to an improvement in language instruction.
However, not all scientific fields and professions view humour as something that needs to be taken and used more seriously. Most of us still think that the realm of humour is only for comedians. In fact, of the above, every field of science and profession actually requires a touch of humour.
Responding to this challenge, Institut Humor Indonesia Kini (The Indonesian Humour Institute Now) or IHIK3 for short, provides The Library of Humor Studies which welcomes people from any profession to research and study humour, for free and no membership applied. Established in 2016, IHIK3 itself is a center for humour activities in Indonesia that manages humour seriously and professionally based on experience, knowledge and comprehensive research, supported by literature, practitioners and academics who have a great interest in the field of humour.
“I am a tax attorney where the profession demands a high degree of seriousness. For self-healing, I read humorous books, as entertainment. But after I read a lot and collect humour book. I see that humour can be beyond entertainment as well. As it turns out, humour is scientific, humor is serious. I then thought I didn’t want to read these books alone, so I provide a place to put my book collections so people could read them too, even though in reality is still very few people came. But for me, knowledge is not power, sharing knowledge is power.” Said Danny Septriadi, Founder of The Library of Humor Studies.
The library offers books that examine humour from a wide variety of disciplines. Some of them are books that examine humour from the perspectives of psychology, health, business, anthropology, to graphic design and advertising.
“I have a collection of more than 2000 books on humour and these are all my explorations for more than 30 years. So far, not only comedians come here, there is even a cancer survivor who says he is grateful to know humour because it can heal. In this library, you will read humour, you will think humour and you will create or produce humour. Because by learning the humour we can accepts possibilities, opens all possibilities and various perspectives,” explained Danny.
According to Danny, the library is also to encourage people to read more about humour, one of which is to avoid suicide which is now happening in many people around the world. He added that humor can be used by multi-disciplines without having to learn to be a comedian.
“One of our concerns is humour at work and how to implement humour in the work environment. Because there we do not only work but we need relationships with other people, we need enthusiasm. So, humour is a powerful solution. In the application of humour itself, it is not to entertain oneself but can relieve an illness or the impact of an emotionally draining work. Now there is an emotional labour where we are forced to only show one emotion even though we have 20 emotions that we can feel, but we are only forced to be happy, even though we can feel sad and tired that a fake smile or happiness syndrome appears, set due to company needs. The concepts of emotional labour were never raised by Indonesia. For example, we can see in restaurants, hotel employees or those who work as customer service, bank employee, etc. They force employees to always have a friendly smile which they may actually be tired of. And it can be burned out with the concept of humour.” Danny elucidated while showing a book published by IHIK3, Humor at Work as a guide for educating that there are important things that most companies miss.
95% of the books on humour studies are in English from credible publishers, such as The MIT Press, The Economist, Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, to Phaidon, Bloomsbury, and Penguin. The book collection provided considered quite difficult to find elsewhere, some of them are The Psychology of Humour: An Integrative Approach by Rod A. Martin, When the World Laughs by William V.Costanzo, A Smile in the Mind by Beryl McAlhone, Philosophy of Laughter and Humour by John Morreall, and many more.
Danny reveals that there are still very few books on humour in Indonesian and that’s why he had to hunt it across the countries. And since most of the books are in English, resulting there are still few people who come to the library, although now it has slightly increased. But because of the noble intention to help people who really want to do research, this library has a humour researcher who translates the knowledge in these books with seminars, workshops, and Instagram Live so that people are given easy access the studies. Moreover, this library has retyped (700 pages) the book by the father of Indonesian humour, Arwah Setiawan so that the public can read it which can also be accessed on the organization’s website.
“In order to convey the knowledge contained in these books easily and well-delivered, we package events with five specific topics, namely Humour at Work, Teaching with Humour, Humour Style, Humour & Creativity, and Humour & Critical Thinking.” Stated Ulwan Fakhri, a Humour Researcher of the library who is also responsible for the events.
Danny believes that the strength of the library can be accounted for because everything is research-based, not just practical. He himself felt many benefits when opening the humour library, one of which was that there were many soft skills that he could learn to support his profession.
“From a literacy perspective, the library is not only a place to store books and reading rooms, but it must be at the stage of inviting people to think critically and must be able to invite people to understand what is implied from what is written and invite people to practice even if they need to produce goods or services. From this library, from this collection of books it is useful for people to read and write and explore humour. We organize various seminars and talk shows that we can include humorous messages with a simple goal: so that Indonesia does not become an angry nation. As we can see, our society is easily angry now. On the highway we hear a lot of honking. In fact, they said Indonesian people have a high sense of humour? Here we explain everything, how to distinguish humour and bully, how humour is in the medical world, taxes, hotels, and so on. And if we master it, we will become pleasant people in the social world.” Maman Suherman, the Advisor of The Library of Humor Studies explained.
The Library of Humour Studies opens from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. However, visitors who want to come on weekends or holidays can make an agreement in advance with IHIK3 at +6281574914554.
The Library of Humor Studies
Jalan Boulevard Barat Raya
Blok XC 5-6 No. B
Kelapa Gading, Jakarta Utara 14240