Women We Love: Lena Dunham

© Collage / Julia Zierer

What’s New Pussycat?

Being an adult means finding an attitude towards life. It’s especially bad in your mid-twenties. It’s this weird no-longer/not-yet stage between a panicked fear of pretty much everything and the boundlessness of one’s own ego. It’s like riding a roller coaster. One of the big Six Flags monsters. Thinking really only works under extreme conditions. This fear of not belonging, of failing, being unpopular, unattractive or simply too complicated has never been captured or described as well as by Lena Dunham. Since 2012 Hannah Horvath (Dunham’s alter ego and the main character in the American television series Girls) has opened herself up, unashamedly baring her body and soul, not asking once if we even want to see her belly rolls or her completely confused internal process.

Lena Dunham isn’t waiting for the world to change itself or expecting that it will voluntarily give her the due she deserves. She understood early on that the key to power and to being heard is in networks, alliances and participation. Dunham herself has written and produced four seasons of Girls, the fifth has been filmed and will start at the end of February. She also writes for The New Yorker and produces documentary films. In 2014 her book Not That Kind of Girl was published. A few months ago, together with her best friend Jenni Konner (one of the producers of Girls), she founded “Lenny.” “Lenny” (Lena + Jenni = Lenny) an e-mail newsletter and an online platform that reaches out to “all of the women of the world and those who love women.” The topics: “Feminism, style, health, politics, friendship and everything else, because there’s no such thing as too much information.”

And because there really isn’t already too much in the Dunham world, in parallel to “Lenny” she’s recorded an 11 episode podcast available on iTunes: “Women of the Hour.” It’s also about friendship, sex, the body, career, love and the best terms of endearment. And this insane tempo shows how heroic Dunham is and that there should actually be a text about her every month because nothing stays the way it was. Because you always have the feeling that not everything has been said, that Dunham can be further explained and described and praised to the skies.

Lena Dunham isn’t afraid of big emotions. No fear of pathos, her own voice or her own body. A body – and this is also one of the things you learn from her – that can do everything. If you take it seriously and don’t try to squeeze it into this how-I-should-be form. In May, by the way, Dunham will be 30.

Instagram Impressions @lenadunham

Women Of The Hour Podcast

Carolin Würfel was born in Leipzig in 1986. She like to write about remarkably cool women or German phenomena for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung as well as other publications.