What Is Entertaiment?


The clown at a birthday party, the Broadway show, the stadium rock concert, your friends fighting over the last potato chip—all these are forms of entertainment. The word comes from the Old French entretenir, which had to do with hospitality–keeping guests happy. Today we think of it more in terms of diversion and amusement, and a form of entertainment can be anything from a crossword puzzle to an orchestral piece based on Scheherazade, the story from the Persian professional storytelling tradition about a woman who kept herself alive by telling stories.

What is entertaining for one person may be dull to another.