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Nancy Meyers

With her blockbuster hits Private Benjamin and Baby Boom, Nancy Meyers defied the conventional wisdom that a movie centered on a woman’s story wouldn’t draw audiences.

Amy Schumer

On her award-winning sketch comedy show, Amy Schumer has used humor to call attention to feminist issues from ageism against women in Hollywood to the pervasiveness of rape culture.

Sarah Silverman

Comedian Sarah Silverman has used her raunchy and irreverent deadpan humor as much to raise awareness about issues like women’s health as to entertain.

Chelsea Handler

When her confession in a DUI class left people rolling in the aisles, struggling actress Chelsea Handler launched a brilliant new career as a comedian.

Remembering Anne Meara: Jewish Mother By Choice

Anne Meara was a Jewess with an attitude. She was born in Brooklyn on September 20, 1929, raised as a Catholic, and died as a Jew in Manhattan on May 23, 2015. Meara studied drama and although she never intended to be a comedian, that’s how she will be remembered by most audiences. What made Meara truly unique was that she exuded her Irish ethnicity while simultaneously taking on the mantle of Jewish wife and mother.

For Women in Comedy, A New Jewish Voice

Jewish women are having a moment. At the end of 2014, Flavorwire published an article entitled “2014 Was—Secretly—The Year of the Jewish Woman.” It profiled Jewish women who made news in culture in the past year: Abbi Glazer and Ilana Jacobson of the Comedy Central show Broad City, Jill Soloway, the writer of the groundbreaking show Transparent,  and Jenny Slate, the comedian who starred in the romantic comedy Obvious Child, among others. 

Naomi Weisstein, 1939 - 2015

“Papa don’t lay that shit on me, I ain’t your groovy chick.
Papa don’t lay that shit on me, it’s just about to make me sick.”

—Naomi Weisstein in the Chicago Women’s Liberation Rock Band

Naomi Weisstein was a fierce warrior for justice. She was a passionate disrupter of the existing order. She was a brilliant scientist. She was a fighter for women’s liberation. She was hysterically funny. She had biting insights. She was my beloved friend.

Comic Renegades

Making Us Laugh, One Jewess Joke at a Time

Ilana Glazer

Ilana Glazer defied the odds for young female comedians by co-creating the popular and critical hit sitcom Broad City with Abbi Jacobson.

Abbi Jacobson

Frustrated by the lack of opportunities for young female comedians, Abbi Jacobson teamed up with fellow comedian Ilana Glazer to create the immensely popular Broad City.


How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Comedy." (Viewed on November 30, 2015) <>.


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