Lena Dunham’s Response To Jezebel’s Body-Trolling Is Almost Perfect

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Remember last month when Jezebel offered $10,000 for unretouched photos of Lena Dunham‘s Vogue shoot? Remember how most of the internet– Jezzies and anti-Gawker bloggers alike– thought it was kind of misguided and messed up? Remember how Dunham wrote a brilliant retort into an episode of Girls? Grab some popcorn (or get in the bathtub and unwrap a cupcake, if you’re a Hannah Horvath fan), because the saga continues today!

Dunham recently sat down with Bill Simmons to talk about, among other things, her relationship with the Gawker network, saying:

I think Jezebel can be really smart and funny; I think it’s just like, once you’ve been attacked that way, it’s hard to enjoy. It’s hard to enjoy once you feel like they’ve made such a monumental error in their approach to feminism.

Uh, yep. We kind of feel the same way.

I’ve always been a fan of Jezebel, and I can’t say I’ve lost all respect for them lately (I adore Dodai Stewart so, so much), but they’ve definitely become less about feminism and more about sensationalism. I’ll never forgive them for that horrible, victim-blaming piece about Chris Brown‘s childhood sexual abuse, for one thing, and this whole Lena Dunham debacle has also chipped away at my respect for the site as a whole.

Don’t worry, though– the irony in the last part of Lena’s quote isn’t lost on me. LD has been criticized time and time again for her very privileged, very white “approach to feminism,” and there’s a lot of crossover between people who don’t respect Jezebel and people who don’t respect Girls. I don’t think that invalidates Lena’s point, but I feel like it’s important to mention.

Anyway, the Bill Simmons interview goes on to contain another little nugget of gold– Lena has a shining moment of self-awareness. She says she’s sympathetic towards the Jezebel writers, because when you’re writing so much, you’re bound to make an ass of yourself eventually:

I don’t know, ’cause I didn’t talk to the woman who did it directly, but I can’t imagine the reaction made her feel particularly great. I can’t imagine– that much content? I’d lose my mind, and I did have sympathy for that.

Totally. As a person who writes a lot of words on the internet every day, I can say with authority that it’s really easy to make a major misstep once in a while.

So whether you love Jezebel or Lena Dunham or both– or whether you wish all of them would get out of the spotlight for a second and make room for women whose voices don’t get heard– at least you can appreciate a good internet scandal. Thanks for the entertainment, ladies.

Via The Wire / Photo: Getty

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    • Lindsey Conklin

      I think her sympathetic attitude is refreshing too, not acting like the victim (which she was! but still) that’s a kind attitude to have

      • Tempuri-san

        That’s it exactly – it was kind, and even compassionate.