Comedy Studies: Special Journal Issue Gender and Comedy in the Twenty-First Century

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Comedy Studies (Intellect)
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Comedy Studies Issue 6 October 2012 Special Issue: Comedy and Gender

Guest Editor: Dr Katy Shaw (University of Brighton)

Comedy Studies is an annual international academic journal that covers multiple aspects of comedy, with articles about both contemporary and historical comedy, interviews with practicing comedians and writers, reviews, letters and editorials. The journal seeks to be instrumental in creating interdisciplinary discourse about the nature and practice of comedy, providing a forum for the disparate voices of comedians, academics and writers.

Comedy Studies is issuing a call for articles, interviews, book reviews, opinion pieces and conference reports for a special issue on gender and comedy in the twenty-first century. The first decade of the new millennium witnessed an explosion in comedy written by or starring women. From the continued success of Victoria Wood, French and Saunders and Jo Brand, to a new British generation of female comics such as Sarah Millican, Andi Osho, Miranda Hart, the international appeal of Tina Fey, Ellen DeGeneres and the commercial and critical success of films like Bridesmaids, significant developments in the relationship between gender and contemporary comedy suggest that in the twenty-first century, funny is funny regardless of gender. But not everyone agrees. Many cultural commentators continue to argue that when it comes to comedy, women are just not as funny as men. Christopher Hitchins recently rekindled this debate, claiming that 'For men, it is a tragedy that the two things they prize the most—women and humor—should be so antithetical.' He found an unlikely ally in feminist Germaine Greer whose tirade against female comics declared that that 'Women famously cannot learn jokes. If they try, they invariably bugger up the punchline.'

This Special Issue of Comedy Studies will examine these tensions and develops, exploring the changing relationship between comedy and gender in the twenty-first century as a new and directional source of understanding and creative inspiration for contemporary students, scholars and comedy lovers the world over. Articles addressing, but not limited to, the following themes are invited:

· Gender and TV Comedy
· Gender and Film Comedy
· Gender and Stand-Up Comedy
· Gender and Sketch Comedy
· Gender and Comedy Writing
· Gender, Comedy and the Media

Articles should be 6000-7000 words in length. The closing date for articles is 1st February 2012.

Details of formatting can be found on the Comedy Studies Website:,id=185/

Please send submissions, questions or enquiries to guest Dr Katy Shaw at

Dr Katy Shaw
Subject Leader, English Literature
School of Humanities
Faculty of Arts
E350 Checkland Building
Falmer Campus
University of Brighton
East Sussex
(01273) 643314