Is it possible to laugh alone? There are certainly times when we burst out laughing all by ourselves. But usually, we think of laughter as a group activity. In the classic Laughter: An Essay on the Meaning of the Comic, Henri Bergson wrote, “However spontaneous it seems, laughter always implies a kind of secret freemasonry, or even complicity, with other laughers, real or imaginary.” To laugh alone is to remember the social atmosphere of past laughter: the giddiness over cocktails, the scrunched-up face of the curmudgeonly aunt. This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-One Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 44 Hannah Traore The art world's next big thing is a gallerist. Arts & Culture Issue 44 The False Mirror Compositions inspired by the iconic clouds—and surrealist sensibilities—of René Magritte. Arts & Culture Issue 44 Boaz Nechemia Meet Jerusalem’s favorite weatherman. Arts & Culture Issue 44 Fredi Otto One scientist's mission to prove the link between extreme weather and climate change. Arts & Culture Issue 44 Ghostlore Four questions about supernatural studies. Arts & Culture Issue 44 Word: Anecdata Fact, meet fiction.