Black Humor in China

If you follow the news on China’s economy, you might know that the Chinese stock market has been going up and down like a rollercoaster recently. This means some people have probably lost a lot of money. How do they cope with this spell of bad luck? Black humor!

Take for example a recent set of WeChat emojis. In one frogs line up to jump off of a building, and in another one, after what was presumably a bad day, there’s nothing left to do but eat instant noodles.

The funniest bit of black humor I’ve come across is this joke below:

医院院长因股市暴跌跳楼,好容易被抢救过来。 家人纷纷围在床前,问他想要什么,他虚弱地回答:“我…只…想…要…沪市...涨。”。他老婆一耳光打过去 “我一直怀疑你和护士长有关系,到死还想着她!”


After a stock market crash, the director of a hospital decides to jump off the building, but, seeing as it’s a hospital, he’s easily rescued. His family members gather around his bed, and ask him if he wants anything. He weakly answers “I… only… want… for the… Shanghai… stock market (沪市 - hùshì) to go… up (涨 - zhǎng). His wife immediately slaps him in the face “I've always thought you were having an affair with the head nurse (护士长 - hùshizhǎng)! Even when you’re about to die all you think about is her!"

Kevin writes columns for the GoEast Blog on studying Chinese, Chinese culture, and life as a foreign student. He has studied China and Chinese for over five years, first in his home country the Netherlands, then in Beijing, and now attends Fudan University's Chinese Society department.