Lena Dunham, creator of the hit HBO show “Girls,” is starting a lifestyle newsletter and naming it Lenny — “the name of an old Jewish man,” according to her business partner.
Lenny is “the name that people call us by accident all the time on the walkie-talkie” on the set of “Girls,” the partner, Jenni Konner, told CNNMoney. “It’s also the name of an old Jewish man, and we love old Jewish men.”
Konner is a producer and showrunner on “Girls,” as well as Dunham’s close friend. The women — both Jewish — will launch Lenny together in September, and they invited people to sign up for it starting Tuesday. The subject matter will range widely and include feminism, politics, fashion and current events, they said.
Maybe it’s best that Lenny steer clear of the Jewish beat. Dunham’s New Yorker piece from March “Dog or Jewish Boyfriend? A Quiz” was widely condemned as anti-Semitic, or at least insensitive. Outgoing ADL head, Abe Foxman, said at the time that the piece “evokes memories of the ‘No Jews or Dogs Allowed’ signs from our own early history in this country.”
Dunham, who writes and stars in “Girls,” described the newsletter’s target subscribers as millennial women, or men: “An army of like-minded intellectually curious women and the people who love them, who want to bring change but also want to know, like, where to buy the best tube top for summer that isn’t going to cost your entire paycheck,” she told Buzzfeed.
Writer Jessica Grose, formerly an editor at Jezebel and Slate, will be the newsletter’s editor-in-chief, and producer Benjamin Cooley will be the CEO, Dunham and Konner said.
Dunham hinted that, Goop, the mega-newsletter of fellow-Jew Gwyneth Paltrow’s, was an inspiration. “Jenni and I have always been obsessed with Goop,” she told Buzfeed. “We feel strongly that even if some of it is aspirational, it’s aspirations like ‘I want to know how to take care of my body and soufflé something.’”
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