August 24, 2009 / Opportunity, Uncategorized

Are Women Funny?

by

Many of you joined us as we spoke out about David Letterman’s inappropriate jokes aimed at Sarah Palin’s teenage daughter. Of course, as we researched the matter, we found that the jokes that Letterman delivered were written by staff composed almost exclusively of men.

Which brings us to the question: are women funny? Why are so few women employed as writers behind the comedy delivered to us on a daily basis.

Check out this video of Rachel Sklar as she interviews the Daily Show co-creator Lizz Winstead about the dearth of women working behind the scenes on shows like The Colbert Report and The Daily Show:

What do you think? Are women funny?

Join Our Email List

Be the first to know the latest initiatives from The New Agenda to improve the lives of women and girls.

Thank you for joining our list! Check your inbox to confirm your subscription.

  • I watch Chelsea Lately, and I think her and her roundtable are downright hysterical. I have never once laughed at anything on the Jay Leno show and don’t understand why he’s even on the air.

  • Adrienne in CA

    Why are so few women employed as writers behind the comedy delivered to us on a daily basis?

    Because women who make it into the comedy club (or whatever other club), and are in a position to even the score, rather than actively seeking out women, blandly note that only three women applied, and none of those “had the chops.”

    It’s the same old paradox.
    If we won’t help each other, why would anyone help us?

    *****A

  • Yes women are funny. I come from a family of funny women. My sisters and I and my youngest daughter are naturally funny. We get our humor from my father.
    I want to see more female writers. I don’t find a lot of things funny like Letterman or Leno. Mo’nique is very funny I just want to know where the women writers are. I know they can’t find any funny writers out of 51% of the population.

  • Bes

    Of course women are funny. Media is the most sexist business going and they get by with their corporate culture of sexism because they do not compete in a free market and because “feminists” are too disorganized or afraid of their own power to put up a media and advertiser boycott and force the issue. To get ahead in media you need male approval. If a woman alters her behavior to gain male approval she looks fake and like a sell out to women. The result is the few channels that are aimed at women run content with women in it not women’s content. Few watch these channels and most people who do watch them are not women. The only good thing about “women’s programing” channels is they concentrate all that garbage in one easily avoidable place so all you have to do is put a block on the channels and you have avoided a huge pile of sexist garbage (including sexist advertising). The media companies do not even consider you a customer as a cable subscriber they consider the men who buy advertising time from them customers. “Women’s content” is meant to appeal to men who would buy advertising time not female viewers. The corporate media make money based on how many houses their channels reach not on how many people actually watch.

  • Kathleen Wynne

    Bes,

    Speaking of the sexist media. I’ve been watching the U.S. Open series of tennis these past weeks and I noticed that 99% of the time there are only men covering the men’s tennis, while 100% of the time there are usually 2 men and 1 woman covering the women’s tennis.

    Would men notice if 2 women and 1 man covered the men’s tennis? I bet they would. However, they never seem to take notice that even when it’s a woman’s event, they still feel they should crowd out the women in reporting the event.

    I know this is not the worst of what women have to put up with, but for reason, since the democratic primary and what happened to Hillary and Sarah Palin, I’ve noticed just how much and how often women are margianalized. It seems that since the primary, we’ve been lectured about the evils of racism almost daily, but we’ve not heard a peep from the MSM or other media outlets about the rampant sexism that occurred during the election and is still occurring.

    What will it take for women to realize that, if they haven’t already, men are never going to give us our equal share of the pie. If we truly want a society that accepts women as equals and see our daughters realize their full potential, then we are going to have to stand together, defend each other, support each other and stop believing that if we just placate the men, they will invite us to be “members of the club” and treat us with the same respect they show each other.

    They will only begin to respect us, when we learn to respect each other with the same abandon.

    The only thing women need to copy from the men is to respect each other, as they have done for each other since the beginning.

  • RealChange

    Are women funny? Or is it- Are men afraid to laugh at funny women? What wusses! Oh that’s the problem isn;t it? Other men might think they are gay or something if they actually think women are as funny as men. Geez!!

    See Mary Birdsong’s response to C.H.’s article – http://www.zulkey.com/diary_archive_011107.html

    Regarding the cavalier disposing of the reason why there aren’t more women in comedy writing, “only 3 applied and they didn’t have the chops”…Give me a break, exactly what we’re talking about! And then to add insult to injury to say that it’s not a gender or race issue, just a political one…pull-eeze! It’s the same old, same old. Until women in power start giving a hand up to other women and challenging the patriarchal status quo, we are going to get nowhere fast.

    Kathleen -Well said! And yes! I’ve got your back!

  • Kathleen Wynne

    RealChange,

    Absolutely loved the Mary Birdsong article you posted. I laughed out loud and couldnt’ stop!! Oh, I forgot, women aren’t funny, so I must be crazy for laughing!

    Thanks so much for the link. She speaks what I’m feeling, but in a better way.

    I’ve got your back too, kid.

    Ooops, I’m still laughing…what’s wrong with me, women aren’t any more funny than they are intelligent or creative or business savvy or politically astute, or atheletic or able to multi task or….

  • RealChange, thank you for the article by Birdsong!

    “”Tell the funny man who wrote the big article that it is too uncomfortable for most men to laugh at women’s jokes.

    …maybe the question we should ask is not ‘Why are women not funny?’ but instead… ‘Why are men bad laughers?'” http://www.zulkey.com/diary_archive_011107.html

    I believe Birdsong’s implication that most men prefer to laugh at men’s jokes than women’s jokes. Personally, the thing I find most funny is human behavior and I often laugh at things not meant to be funny because of the psychology behind what I’m seeing and hearing. I love laughing and it has healing properties. I believe the less sexist men become, the more they will laugh at women’s jokes, the less they will laugh at sexist “jokes” and the less they will tolerate sexist articles like Christopher Hitchens ludicrous article denouncing women comics which was an article I laughed at rather than with.