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The Shalvi/Hyman Encyclopedia of Jewish Women

Features thousands of biographic and thematic essays on Jewish women around the world. Learn more

Monica Lewinsky

b. July 23, 1973

by JWA Staff
Our work to expand the Encyclopedia is ongoing. We are providing this brief biography for Monica Lewinsky until we are able to commission a full entry.

Monica Lewinsky in 2015 during her TED Talk. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

After news of her affair with President Clinton went viral, Monica Lewinsky survived a national scandal to become an anti-bullying crusader. Lewinsky graduated from Lewis & Clark College in 1995 with a degree in psychology and became an intern in the White House Office of Legislative Affairs later that year. Over the next year and a half, she had an affair with President Bill Clinton, and when Clinton was investigated for various allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct during his years as governor of Arkansas, the prosecution used his affair with Lewinsky as proof of perjury and an ongoing pattern of behavior. Lewinsky became the target of late-night comedians and internet forums and later described herself as “patient zero of online harassment.” Facing legal fees from her representation in the Clinton impeachment hearings, she gave interviews, sold the rights to her life story, and in 1999 created The Real Monica, Inc., a line of designer handbags. In 2006 she earned a master’s degree in social psychology from the London School of Economics, but continued to struggle finding work due to her notoriety. In response to the ongoing problem of cyberbullying, Lewinsky reflected on her experiences for Vanity Fair in 2014. The following year, she gave a TED talk on internet harassment and became the strategic advisor for Bystander Revolution, an anti-bullying organization.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Monica Lewinsky." (Viewed on March 28, 2023) <https://jwa.org/encyclopedia/article/lewinsky-monica>.


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