|Title||Resisting categorization in interaction: Membership categorization analysis of sitcom humor|
|Tag(s)||EMCA, Membership Categorization, Media|
|Journal||Journal of Pragmatics|
Membership categorization analysts have suggested that practices of resisting categorization are worth investigating, and these practices might be related to humor in interaction. This study examines how practices of resisting categorization contribute to the production of humor in the moment-by-moment flow of interaction. While humor can be found in a diverse range of interactional contexts, I focus on a sitcom, a specific type of mediated communication. Using a United States sitcom series for data, my analysis demonstrates two mechanisms of the interactional production of humor related to resisting categorization. First, the repetition of categorization and resistance to categorization among participants can produce humor. Second, engagement in category-bound activities despite resisting the categorization can be a resource for humor production. The analysis shows that the collective sender sequentially arranges fictional characters' categorization, resisting categorization, and category-bound activities in interactions to create humorous incongruity for the audience.