Analysis of camel jokes

As we have seen, elephant jokes are worthy of academic study.

Camel jokes are less complicated to explain. The animal’s unusual appearance (particularly its humps) are a ready butt of jokes.

We start with this elephant-and-camel joke:

elephant camel joke

These jokes were probably inspired by the US Vice-President Hubert Humphrey:

Humphrey the camel

Or this one inspired by the Bible:

camel needle saying

Those who follow the Beau Peep strip would remember Sopwith the camel. As German pilots of WW1 would testify, the Sopwith Camel was not a laughing matter:

Sopwith Camel.jpg

If you google for “camel jokes”, you would probably end up with variations of the story involving sex-starved soldiers and nomads doing things with camels. Steering clear of that, we look at the long involvement of camels with the tobacco industry.

One of the complaints involved the “Joe the Camel” advertisements which were said to induce children to start smoking:

And, of course, it was not difficult to find phallic symbols in the ads like this:


Then there was “I’d walk a mile for a Camel”.

The long association of camels with American cigarettes gave rise to this satirical piece:


The desert wilted under the blazing sun.

The camel looked down to see what he had done.

“To think”, he said, “this dirty mess

Will soon be smoked in State Express”


We close this with a genuine camel story, this time involving Winston Churchill when he was on the way up the political ladder:

Churchill camel 1

Churchill camel 2