(AP/Chris Pizzello)

Amy Schumer: Death threats have made me want to "use my voice even more"

Schumer sits down with her sister for Glamour's August issue to discuss the price all vocal comedians must pay


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Colin Gorenstein
July 7, 2015 9:03PM (UTC)

There's a lot going on in the world of Amy Schumer this month. While the comedian gears up for the July 17 wide release of her film, "Trainwreck," and continues to churn out mega-viral "Inside Amy Schumer" sketches on Comedy Central, she's also faced with fielding a slew of criticisms about her race jokes, due in large part to The Guardian's blistering editorial published a few weeks ago.

Schumer recently sat down for an interview with fellow "Inside Amy Schumer" writer (and sister!) Kim Caramele, for her August Glamour cover story. The two, of course, touched on every media outlet's favorite question of the moment: "So, feminism. Thoughts?" The comedian explained that she, in no way, tries to be a feminist -- that she just is one -- before going on to say that "I have no interest in trying to be the perfect feminist, but I do believe feminists are in good hands with me."

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Maybe more surprising, though, are Schumer's anecdotes about what it's like being a woman in comedy. It's not unusual to receive death threats, the comedian says, and there are plenty of unsolicited jokes from men about blow-jobs to go around.

Have a look at some of Glamour's interview highlights below:

On sexism in the industry: 

Schumer: I was headlining at a comedy club, and you saw one of the security guards, who had always been so nice to me, saying, “Amy’s so successful now. I wonder how she got that?” and then pretending to give a blow job.
Glamour: And you confronted him, right?
Schumer: I remember. I was like, “Don’t say that about her—that’s not true.” And he was like, “Oh, no, that’s just how we joke!”
Glamour: Yeah, that sh-t. And the whole “Who did she sleep with?” to get whatever? I’ve never slept with anyone who could help me at all. No one. I wish I had. If anything, everyone I’ve had sex with has been a real step in the wrong direction. [Laughs.]

On the downside of being a woman who is "vocal": 

Schumer: You’ve got to be vocal. You let people know. Their ego’s a little bruised. Then they adapt.
Glamour: Is it scary to be a woman who’s using her voice the way you do?
Schumer: I have gotten death threats—that was scary. But it just made me want to use my voice more.
Glamour: Sometimes people describe you as somebody who doesn’t care what anybody else thinks. But I don’t think that’s true.
Schumer: I care about what the people I care about think about me. It’s a short list, but I really care about what those people think.

On gender "double-standards":

Glamour: After your amazing speech at the Glamour U.K. Women of the Year Awards [in which Schumer said, “I’m probably like 160 pounds right now, and I can catch a dick whenever I want”], one commenter on YouTube wrote, “If a man talked about catching pussy, the media would be calling him a chauvinistic pig.” What do you think about that?
Schumer: I think they’re right. If a guy was like, “I can get pussy whenever I want,” that guy would be a dickhead. But to deny that there’s a major difference is ridiculous. For women, we’re taught to eat less until we disappear. And trained to believe that if you don’t look like everyone else, then you’re unlovable. And men are not trained that way. Men can look like whatever and still date a supermodel. I’m proud of what I said. I think it’s good to see somebody saying: I have a belly. And I have cellulite. And I still deserve love. And to catch the old D. And to not apologize.

Read extended excerpts from the Glamour interview here.  The August issue hits newsstands July 14.


Colin Gorenstein

Colin Gorenstein is Salon's assistant editor of internet and viral content. Follow @colingorenstein or email cgorenstein@salon.com.

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