Popular culture has made academia out to be a completely humorless field filled with boring people doing boring things in boring ways. While it’s true that spending a lot of time examining the intricacies of any subject isn’t as outwardly exciting as, say, racing dirt bikes for a living, academics, like everyone else, like to make jokes and have fun while they do their work.
If you need proof of this, check out a thread of incredibly titled academic papers that was kicked off by Australian post-doctorate Lisa Stinson. While Stinson claims the first entry, “Fantastic yeasts and where to find them: the hidden diversity of dimorphic fungal pathogens,” is “the world’s best paper title,” a flood of responses with other examples make even this (still very excellent) showing pale in comparison.
The selections tweeted out range across various fields of study, ranging from biology and chemistry to history and sociology.
Despite the wide overview of academic fields represented, each tweet shows that one uniting factor brings the world’s scholars together: A love of godawful puns.
Considering that even those who author papers on fairly dry subject matter can’t escape the need to give their potentially groundbreaking studies groanworthy titles, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that academics working on anything to do with butts answer the siren call of the pun as well.
Better yet, even the most serious subject matter is given the treatment, making the jokes land harder while reminding us of the psychological effects of spending day after day studying diseases.
There’s a seemingly endless supply of these titles, all making the most out of the comedic potential inherent to dense academic papers. Each and every one of them is a treat not always because the wordplay itself is consistently great, but because all of these cases require the reader to imagine future scholars double checking style guides to remember the proper format in which to cite shit like “From urethra with shove: Bladder foreign bodies. A case report and review” throughout the rest of human history.
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