Tending to excite laughter or contempt by extravagant images, or by a contrast between the subject and the manner of treating it, as when a trifling subject is treated with mock gravity; jocular; ironical.
The use of caricature, distortion, exaggeration, irony, parody, and/or travesty to ridicule a subject normally treated in a noble or dignified manner. Many of Hogarth's prints could be so described, as could some of the work of Vincent Trasov, General Idea, Gilbert and George, and so on.
A work designed to ridicule a style, literary form, or subject matter either by treating the exalted in a trivial way or by discussing the trivial in exalted terms (that is, with mock dignity). Burlesque concentrates on derisive imitation, usually in exaggerated terms. Literary genres (like the tragic drama) can be burlesqued, as can styles of sculpture, philosophical movements, schools of art, and so forth.
A work designed to ridicule attitudes, styles, or subject matter by either handling an elevated subject in a trivial manner or a low subject with mock dignity. The burlesque may be written for the sheer fun of it; usually, however, it is a form of satire. See also: PARODY and SATIRE