Hammer and Tickle: The Communist Joke Book

Under the oppressive Communist regimes of the Soviet Union and its satellites, ordinary people told thousands of jokes about the society they lived in and the political system they suffered under. Denied free speech, and confronted daily with the gap between political propaganda and everyday reality, jokes became the language of truth in the world of Communism. They were a way for ordinary people to resist the regime – but the Communist regimes also used to jokes, to diffuse opposition. Jokes were thus the real battleground between state and people under Communism.

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