Ziwe Fumudoh Uses Humor to Push Racial Buttons


Ziwe Fumudoh

Age: 27

Hometown: Lawrence, Mass.

Now lives: In a three-bedroom apartment in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn, with a roommate.

Claim to fame: Ms. Fumudoh is a saucy and sarcastic comedian known for her barbed satire of race, politics and the pitfalls of young adulthood. (Forbes recently said she possessed “the confidence of an old comedy pro.”)

Examples of her elastic oeuvre include “Ponderosa With Omarosa,” a hip-hop jam about Omarosa Manigault Newman (sample lyric: “Drinking dark and Stormy Daniels, watching Oval Office scandals”), and “Baited With Ziwe,” a YouTube series in which she tricks her white friends into blurting out racial faux pas. “I’m a little bit of an antagonist who likes to push people’s buttons,” Ms. Fumudoh said. “I like to laugh at things that are really sad because it makes me feel better.”

Reading is fundamental: Ms. Fumudoh said studying poetry and taking African-American studies courses at Northwestern University prepared her well for her career lampooning social norms. “I’ve always had this real inclination toward reading, literature and critique,” she said. “I say things so horrendously offensive with a nod and wink, so people can see the commentary behind it.”



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