Women Comedians and Body Politics
Publication Year: 2014
Published by: University of Texas Press
Title Page, Copyright Page
Many people helped me with Pretty/Funny and also made it a lot of fun to think about and write. Robyn Warhol and Kimberly Springer offered insightful readings of individual chapters and gave me excellent advice about revisions. Ann Kibbey and the...
Introduction. Pretty/Funny Women and Comedy’s Body Politics: Funniness, Prettiness, and Feminism
In 2007, eminent journalist Christopher Hitchens published a widely circulated Vanity Fair essay called “Why Women Aren’t Funny,” making the provocative argument that humor is more natural, pervasive, and highly developed in men than in women...
1. Kathy Griffin and the Comedy of the D List
Kathy Griffin often begins her stand-up performances by asking fans in the audience to identify themselves, but it’s a strategy that identifies Griffin herself as a performer with a queer twist on the dynamic of pretty versus funny. In a clip in the “Extras” on She’ll Cut a Bitch (2009), she makes her usual call for her gays. “Where are...
2. Feminism, Postfeminism, Liz Lemonism: Picturing Tina Fey
Tina Fey is the most cerebral of the women comics treated in this book, known for her wit as the acerbic anchorwoman on Saturday Night Live and for the sophisticated humor of her NBC sitcom 30 Rock, hailed by critics as a brilliant satire of network...
3. Sarah Silverman: Bedwetting, Body Comedy, and “a Mouth Full of Blood Laughs”
More than any other comic covered in this book, Sarah Silverman challenges the pretty versus funny dynamic at its very root—the cultural identification of women with their bodies. Silverman performs gross-out comedy that defies cherished ideals...
4. Margaret Cho Is Beautiful: A Comedy of Manifesto
In her 2009 performance film Margaret Cho: Beautiful, Cho tells the story of a radio-show host who asked her what she would do if she “woke up beautiful—blue-eyed, blonde, five foot eleven and one hundred pounds.” Her comic response is about the physical impossibility...
5. “White People Are Looking at You!”: Wanda Sykes’s Black Looks
In the last months of 2009 Wanda Sykes was “everywhere,” as one reporter put it: as a supporting character on The New Adventures of Old Christine (2006–2010), an occasional guest star on Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000–2011), a cartoon voice on Nickelodeon’s...
6. Ellen DeGeneres: Pretty Funny Butch as Girl Next Door
This book began with the question of how popular culture has pictured women in comedy. The traditional placement divides them into the pretty ones, cast in perky romantic comedies, and the funny ones, the female comedians Hollywood has been reluctant...
Page Count: 278
Illustrations: 15 b/w photos
Publication Year: 2014
OCLC Number: 878138044
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Pretty/Funny