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‘Du Crésoxipropanédiol en capsule’. Jean Yanne's musical satire: ‘Interdit d’interdire’ or ‘chanter juste et penser faux’?

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Hugh Dauncey



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© The Author(s) 2023.The satirical songs of Jean Yanne (1933–2003) are a little-studied aspect of the work of this French singer-songwriter, comedian, actor and film director. Composed and performed in the late-1950s and mid-1960s Yanne's satirical music, like his radio and television comedy sketches, spoke to tensions in French politics and society during a period of rapid socioeconomic and sociocultural modernisation. Yanne's idiosyncratically derisive humour was controversial, dividing audiences and critics into those who saw the comedy and others suspecting him of right-wing anarchist nihilism. Analysis of his songs’ themes, lyrics and music shows how Yanne's musical satire continued and developed existing trends in humour and musical comedy, and discussion of how he was critiqued as ‘poujadist’ enables fuller understanding of the complexity of his oeuvre and its reception. Criticism of Yanne as poujadist aims to invalidate his satire, but ‘getting the joke’ equates, ultimately, to seeing his humour as freedom of speech.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Dauncey H

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: French Cultural Studies

Year: 2023

Volume: 34

Issue: 4

Pages: 411-430

Online publication date: 08/02/2023

Acceptance date: 02/04/2021

Date deposited: 25/07/2023

ISSN (print): 0957-1558

ISSN (electronic): 1740-2352

Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd


DOI: 10.1177/09571558221143491


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