Lena Dunham Roxane Gay Essay

Submitted By akishurelds
Words: 1464
Pages: 6

Akiera Shurelds
Professor Mirkhor
Intro To Non- Fictional Writing
2/20/15
Close But Yet So Far Apart Many authors tend to have their own unique techniques and specific ideas they use when it comes to writing. Lena Dunham and Roxane Gay have many similarities and differences when they sit down and start to create a story. When looking at the differences between Dunham and Gay, their writing tends to differ in sentence length and confidence level. However, to build a relationship with the readers, both of these authors expose certain qualities within themselves through their writing by utilizing their distinct and obvious writing techniques such as humor and self deprecation, which they use to keep the readers wanting to know more. Even though these authors have different ways of writing, they both can relate when it comes to using their writing techniques of using self deprecation and sarcastic humor to interest the audience. In Gays Typical First Year Professor, she explains how it is her first time being a professor and she is walking down the hall and hears a student calling out, “Dr. Gay over and over and think, That Dr. Gay is rather rude for ignoring that poor student” (23). Gay is not use to being in an educational environment and is not use to being referred to as “Dr. Gay.” So when she hears a student call out “Dr. Gay”, she feels like that specific teacher is extremely rude for not answering the girl but in actuality she is calling herself rude and talking down on herself because she is the teacher thats not responding to the child. With this quote, Gay is using a combination of sarcastic humor and self deprecation by saying the teacher is truly rude for not answering the student. However, at the same time when she explains this situation she is actually belittling and talking down on herself to give the readers a little more humor because she is self conscious when it comes to being a professor and she wants to hide that by making a joke about herself. Gay uses many little techniques throughout her writing, but one common one she uses is humor. In Typical First Year Professor, she expresses the irritation she has with her students due to how many lies they come up with and explains her solution to these problems, “ There is a plague on grandmothers. The elder relations of my students begin passing at an alarming rate this week. I want to warn the surviving grandmothers, somehow. I want them to live” (24). Gay uses her calm and passive aggressive anger to explain how she wants to save the lives of all these grandmothers who are going to “pass away” very soon within the week. Gay portrays her sarcastic humor when she says, “I want to warn the surviving grandmothers, somehow”, because she would be warning grandmothers who are “said” to be dead but are actually alive. She reveals to the readers that all these lies are not going to get them anywhere but in trouble because she is aware of what her students are trying to do. When examining the writing styles of Gay and Dunham, you can see Gay uses humor intertwined with self deprecation while Lena uses humor with sexual references to lure readers in. In First Love, Lena Dunham expresses her anger by trying to make a humorous sexual reference, “I was dumbfounded. I can only compare it to the feeling of opening your cupboard to grab a cookie, but instead of getting a cookie you get dick- slapped” (1). She explains her situation by comparing her curiosity of reading the email to someone being excited and happy to eat some sweets. But instead of receiving a cookie from the cupboard, Lena refers to the disappointment as being “dick- slapped”. Many can read this line as being humorous due to the wording and by just imagining this action really happening to them right in front of our face but this can also be looked at in a negative way due to the sexual violence happening from a male to a female. By adding this specific type of humor, it helps Lena relate to the younger…