The Honest, Outspoken Amy Schumer
In her obscene, outspoken, and controversial ways, Amy Schumer has shaped comedy; and with that, she has shaped society's views on women. Many important subjects get overlooked because people don’t know how to talk about them. An article in The Atlantic asserts that comedians like Schumer “are acting not just as joke-tellers, but as truth-tellers, as guides through our cultural debates.” With her comedy, Schumer is helping to de-mystify many taboo subjects such as sex, gender norms, and women's bodies.
Amy Schumer has never been one to follow societal norms. In a recent article for Vogue, Schumer says, “I have this innate need to say things that I think are important for people to hear, and I can’t stand injustice.” This philosophy shows in her stand-up comedy and in her series, Inside Amy Schumer, where she openly confronts gender norms and other somewhat uncomfortable subjects. Through jokes, she disseminates truth about some of society’s deepest and most ingrained flaws.
Along with her openness about societal issues, Amy Schumer talks openly about sex and women’s bodies. On more than one occasion, she has said that she doesn’t understand why girls are taught to feel ashamed or uncomfortable when talking about sex. With that, some people deem her to be a “sex-comic,” to which she might say something along the lines of, “I’m just talking about life.” In a world where women aren’t usually celebrated for their sexual history, and slut shaming is a very real issue, it is so important to have a celebrity figure who talks openly about her sexuality. In her book, The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo (which I have read multiple times), Amy Schumer talks about her experience with one-night-stands, losing her virginity, and uncomfortable sexual relationships and partners. Although constantly accused of vulgarity, Schumer continues to be one of the only entertainers who is this open about her sexuality. By incorporating these topics into her entertainment, Amy has inspired more women to also be more open and less guarded about them. One of the reasons why I adore Amy Schumer is because her comedy is relatable and versatile.
As a girl who full-heartedly loves making others feel good, I see Amy Schumer as a feminist savior. Her work has opened up multiple doors that open up rooms filled with female (and male) confidence. Her work is centered around embarrassing moments that she isn’t ashamed to talk about. Her jokes bring attention to supposedly taboo subjects, and more recognition of important issues. Whether she meant to or not, Amy has successfully helped pave the way for a society that no longer tip-toes around women’s issues and sexuality. I am grateful to Schumer for helping me, and other young women, feel more comfortable expressing ourselves.
This piece was written as part of JWA’s Rising Voices Fellowship.
How to cite this page
Klayman, Lili. "The Honest, Outspoken Amy Schumer." 13 December 2016. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on May 24, 2019) <https://jwa.org/blog/risingvoices/honest-outspoken-amy-schumer>.