Home > gender discrimination, jobs, media, sexism, women, work > Gender politics in late night comedy

Gender politics in late night comedy

Nell Scovell, a former writer for the Late Show with David Letterman, has come out with an article about gender inequality in late night comedy, as well as her own experiences while writing for Letterman. This article is really informative and it’s interesting to get inside of a writer’s room, because it’s not something that the general public really has a chance to do or see.

Right off the bat, we find out that there are literally ZERO female writers working for not only Letterman, but also Leno and Conan at this moment. Of course, this talk about gender inequality in this workplace has come with Letterman revealing that he’s had sexual relationships with some of his female staff in the past. Scovell answers some revealing questions at this point.

Did Dave hit on me? No. Did he pay me enough extra attention that it was noted by another writer? Yes. Was I aware of rumors that Dave was having sexual relationships with female staffers? Yes. Was I aware that other high-level male employees were having sexual relationships with female staffers? Yes. Did these female staffers have access to information and wield power disproportionate to their job titles? Yes. Did that create a hostile work environment? Yes. Did I believe these female staffers were benefiting professionally from their personal relationships? Yes. Did that make me feel demeaned? Completely. Did I say anything at the time? Sadly, no.

Sounds like quite a great workplace for women, eh?! If I were in the same position, I would also feel demeaned. Knowing that female staff benefit more from having a sexual relationship with high-level male employees than just working your butt off and doing an awesome job, makes me sad and it’s totally unacceptable. So what does Scovell suggest?

I just want Dave to hire some qualified female writers and then treat them with respect. And that goes for Jay and Conan, too. I realize that “hire qualified women!” is the sort of outraged demand that’s often met with a sigh. No one disagrees and yet gender inequality in high-paying positions extends into all professions.

So true. No one seems to disagree about it, but so much gender inequality still exists in high-paying positions. Is it one those, “Yeah, more qualified women should be hired, but I shouldn’t have to be the one to do it?” mentalities? Kind of like the bystander mentality? Like, no one has a problem with women in high-paying jobs, but no one wants to go and actually help out this situation?

I guess it’s something to think about. All I know, is that ALL women deserve a good workplace where they have respect, which Scovell did eventually find. Of course, that was after leaving Letterman.

Advertisements
  1. No comments yet.
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: