Can comedy save us in the “post-truth” era?

In her fascinating, comprehensive new book “The Girl in the Show: Three Generations of Comedy, Culture, & Feminism,” author Anna Fields reveals the audacious women who shaped modern comedy — and the obstacles they overcame just to get a place on the stage to make audiences laugh. Culled from both exhaustive research and interviews with luminaries like Abbi Jacobson and  Molly Shannon, it’s a tribute to the power of women standing up.

Fields spoke recently with Salon.com about comedy and the “girls” in the rooms where it happened.

On the presumed masculinity of humor:

We do think of men when we think of comedy, and we do think of maleness when we think of a comedian. So many of the women I interviewed talked to me about how they have to “trick the audience into thinking they’re men” in order for the audience to feel comfortable laughing at them but also loving them.

It’s so fascinating — what is a comedian supposed to look like?

On how gender fluidity is changing comedy:

What is to be a female comedian? What is it to be a male comedian? What if you are a comedian of either, both, or no gender? What does that mean in terms of how you present yourself to the audience, what you are allowed to joke about, and whether your audience will feel comfortable joking with you about that thing?

On the political power of laughter

I’ve always asked myself if, given that we live in an era in which so many of our leaders are abdicating their role as truth tellers, if comedians, by telling us the truth, become our new national leaders?

**Watch the video for the full interview. Click here to be redirected to salon.com

**Feature image credit: Salon.com

Can Comedy Save Us? What Do You Think?

‘Post-truth is an intellectual label for bulls**t’ – Nish Kumar on The Mash Report

We are living in a ‘post-truth’ era of fake news, we keep being told. British and American politics are becoming more and more like a South Park episode in real life. Enter stand-up comedian Nish Kumar and master satirists The Daily Mash. Written in the week of broadcast, The Mash Report is a new TV show from the minds behind the website whose Onion-style take on the British news cycle has won it 600,000 fans on Facebook and millions of daily readers. Joined by comedic talents Ellie Taylor, Steve N Allen and Rachel Parris, presenter Kumar will report on everything that happened – or didn’t happen – that week.

Read more: https://inews.co.uk/essentials/culture/television/nish-kumar-the-mash-report-post-truth-satire/

Photo credit: Nish Kumar fronts the new topical show The Mash Report (Photo: BBC)

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