Humor and Conflict in the Digital Age (HACIDA) is a Scientific Research Network funded by an ENLIGHT RISE Grant. 

HACIDA focuses on the intersection of two complicated issues: the nature of and interpretive difficulties presented by humor across different media (such as memes, cartoons, and stand-up comedy); and how the “Digital Revolution” (our chosen ENLIGHT flagship area) has exacerbated these already difficult interpretive issues, often through the decontextualized circulation of humorous images and statements outside of their original national and linguistic borders.

The Digital Revolution has therefore driven two forms of conflict:

1. Interpretive conflict: that is, the ambiguity inherent to humorous forms of speech, which often presuppose at least two levels of signification: the surface and intended meaning of, for instance, an ironic statement or image; and

2. Social and societal conflict: that is, when different and relative cultural norms, standards, mores, and sensitivities have been directly or accidentally challenged by humorous works that have been circulated online often outside of local contexts and frequently through the borderless world of the Internet.


  • Andrew Bricker (Principal Investigator), Associate Professor of English Literature, UGent
  • Jeroen Vandaele, Associate Professor of Spanish & Translation Studies, UGent
  • Alberto Godioli, Associate Professor European Culture and Literature, University of Groningen
  • Anastasiya Astapova, Associate Professor of Folkloristics, University of Tartu
  • Irina Dulebová, Associate Professor of Slavic Studies, Comenius University Bratislava
  • Nina Cingerová, Associate Professor of Slavic Studies, Comenius University Bratislava
  • Carmelo Moreno Del Rio, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of the Basque Country
  • Aitor Castañeda-Zumeta, Adjunct Professor of Journalism, University of the Basque Country
  • Julia Fleischhack, Lecturer in Cultural Anthropology and European Ethnology, University of Göttingen
  • Don Kulick, Distinguished University Professor of Anthropology, Uppsala University