Bernard Manning

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Bernard Manning (August 13, 1930 - 18 June 2007) was a British stand-up comedian, who spent most of his life in Manchester. He was most famous for his controversial humor dealing with race issues. Hugely popular as a live act in his own and other clubs, he disliked television and performed on it only occasionally. His obituary in The Guardian gives some insight into his humour: "...He told mostly short gags, rattling off the prelude and pausing expertly before delivering the often surprising punchline. He might be telling a story that was mildly anti-Jewish during which he revealed that he had some Jewish blood in his ancestry, and then tail away as if he had suddenly lost the heart for it. "We'll have no more Jewish stories tonight," he would rasp. "I've just discovered that I lost my grandfather at Auschwitz." Pause. "He fell out of the machine-gun tower."

Sometimes he would even tell jokes against his own - and his audience's - jingoism. In the Embassy one night, at the height of the Falklands conflict, he announced: "We've got a couple of lads in here tonight. They fought at Goose Green." There was cheering, stamping and applause, until Manning added: "They're Argentinians".[1]


  1. Dixon, Stephen Obituary:Bernard Manning The Guardian June 18, 2007. Accessed June 27, 2007