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Kate Clinton - Lesbian Comedian


Kate Clinton

Kate Clinton

© Photo credit: David Rodgers

Kate Clinton: Fumerist:

Kate Clinton describes herself as a "fumerist," a feminist humorist. She grew up Catholic in New York State and taught high school English for eight years before becoming a comedian. She began her stand-up career in 1981 using her lesbianism, Catholicism and current politics for her jokes.

Kate Clinton Author:

Kate Clinton has two books, Don't Get Me Started published in 1998 and What the L?, which was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award in 2005. Kate also contributes to The Advocate and The Progressive. She's written for The New York Times and The Rosie O'Donnell Show.

Kate Clinton on her 25 years in Lesbian Comedy:

In an AfterEllen interview Kate said, "I think when I look at my history I think I’ve changed as the gay movement has changed. I mean, I came out…sort of at the end of the flowering of the women’s music scene, you know, the end of lesbian-separatism. And really I feel very blessed that’s where I was able to work on material and get my confidence, you know, working in Unitarian basements and coffeehouses. And I think that [it was]…probably about 1985, really, during Reagan when we were at the height of the AIDS crisis that gay men and women really started working together. And I did; I started to do more mixed gay audiences."

Kate Clinton Actor :

Kate Clinton appeared in the film the Secret Lives of Dentists and has narrated a number of documentaries, including No Secrets Anymore - the Times of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon. She appeared on The L Word season 3 as Bette and Tina's therapist.

Kate Clinton Stand Up Comic:

Kate Clinton is perhaps best known as a stand-up comedian. She has been performing since 1981 and in 2006 performed in 50 cities in It's Come to This tour. In 2007 she's launching the Climate Change tour. She appeared in Laughing Matters with three other lesbian comedians.

Comedy is Dangerous:

In an interview with Womankind, Kate Clinton said, "I think comedy is very, very dangerous because a number of things happen. People put their body on the line to actually have a physical reaction... I've actually seen people who were extremely resistant in an audience laugh and I can see things go into them. There's like a window of vulnerability. They laugh about things that they never maybe would, and in that laughing the things come into them and they think. So I think it's very dangerous in that way."

Kate Clinton Lover:

Kate Clinton has been with her partner Urvashi Vaid since 1988. Urvashi was executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force from 1998-1992 and has been an activist and writer since that time. Kate and Urvashi live in New York and Provincetown, MA.

Kate Clinton Jokes:

  • "She couldn't say lesbian if her mouth was full of one."
  • "Whenever I get impatient with Ellen or anyone else trying to come out, however, I simply think back to my own coming out. My closet was huge, had a foyer, a turnstile, a few locks, dead bolts, a burglar alarm with code that lal had to be deactivated, decoded before I coudld even go for the door handle..."
  • "I want to host a religious show. I'm sure nobody will be wanting the 11 o'clock spot on Sunday morning. I think we should really get some of our own preachers and preach that gay is good. And we'd have a great choir."
  • "We signed up for Showtime, which I think put us on a Homeland Security list somewhere."
  • About going through airport security: "They searched me. I did meet a lovely woman in a pat down and I really had no idea I would enjoy random wanding all that much. And you know they only let you go through one time? It's sad."
  • "DJs liked to be able to show off by saying, 'Feminist and humorist? Isn't that an oxymoron?' and I would think, "You're half right, you moron."

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