Well, are they?
I didn't check before to see how many myTakes have been written about or questions have been asked about this subject but I'm just going to type straight from my brain.
Women aren't funny!
I've heard this a lot—that women aren't funny or aren't as funny as men are.
Well, why do people say this? There must be some truth to it if it's a common saying, right?
Christopher Hitchens of Vanity Fair says, "The chief task in life that a man has to perform is that of impressing the opposite gender, and Mother Nature is not so kind to men. An average man has just one, outside chance: he had better be able to make the lady laugh. [...] Women have no corresponding need to appeal to men in this way. They already appeal to men, if you catch my drift."
Hitchens isn't wrong. And don't bother harassing him about that 2007 essay, Hitchens died of esophageal cancer in 2011, so your complaints will fall on deaf—or dead—ears. But that's just boring biological stuff. Are women actually unfunny?
When so many people still believe a woman’s place is in the home when a comedian’s place is anywhere but, an aversion or bias against women performing comedy is probably inevitable.
Speaking from personal experience, no. Women are funny too. But in a different way. The things my female friends laugh about would hardly force a chuckle out of our guy friends. However, sometimes the things my male friends laugh about aren't even remotely funny. Far from it actually. I just laugh out of pity, or because nobody else laughs and I felt bad. My friends of either gender all have inside jokes and stupid jokes they laugh about that wouldn't make sense to anyone else, but don't we all? Since inside jokes are insider for a reason, I'll consider them exempt from this.
Does a woman's humor have anything to do with feminism? Well, in an excerpt from Deadline’s interview with comedian Iliza Schlesinger, she says:
Women want to be treated as equals, and we want feminism to be a thing, but it’s really difficult when every woman makes the same point about her v*****, over and over.
Shlesinger said of female comics in the much-criticized interview:
I think shock value works well for women, but beyond that, there’s no substance. I want to see what else there is with such complex, smart creatures.
Female Comedians and Vag Jokes
She's not wrong either. Lots of female comedians make jokes solely about their v*****—Amy Schumer comes to mind—and that just gets old after a while. However, I'm not really into stand up comedy to begin with so I can't list off funny female comedians off the top of my head but I can't do the same for male comedians either. So whoops.
I don't really like comedians like Amy Schumer either, but I also don't claim that women aren't funny because out of over 3.7 BILLION women, at least a FEW at the slightest have to be funny. It's impossible for almost 4 billion people to all be utterly unfunny. Most guys or girls who claim that women aren't funny might just not have enough funny female friends. Or, simply put, enough female friends.
Dean Burnett of The Guardian sheds some light on this as well. "Women haven’t exactly been given much opportunity to say anything in the past, let alone make jokes," he says. "When so many people still believe a woman’s place is in the home when a comedian’s place is anywhere but, an aversion or bias against women performing comedy is probably inevitable." Unfortunate but true.
Putting it to the test (Sort of.)
I myself ran an experiment, an anonymous online survey/poll asking about if women are funny or not. A second question asked if the participant had more female or male friends. A third question asked who's funnier, men or women? Out of around 700 people, people who answered that they had more male friends were more likely to say that women aren't funny. People who said they had more female friends had much more random and inconclusive results, some would say women are funny but not as funny as men, some would say women aren't funny but neither are men... etc.
Well, in the end, it's just a stereotype that isn't true. Does it even matter?
But also kind of.
I personally wondered this myself, and my own answer for a long time was "Yeah, women are funny, just not as funny as men."
Now that I've done research and written this, I've been reminded of the many times my female friends and family members have made me fold over, stomach hurting, crying of laughter just as my male friends have. In conclusion. Women are funny. Whether you choose to believe men are funnier or not, the claim that all women are unfunny is cliche and overdone.
And if you don't agree with me on that, at least do agree that there's at least one woman out there who's funny. That's all I ask.
NOTE: This wasn't meant to be serious so don't take it that way. I'm not in any way bitter about this stereotype because quite frankly, there's worse stereotypes out there. (Anon opinions off because I feel like I'd get a lot of those)