Academy Award-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence has broken her self-professed attitude of “remain[ing] ever-so-slightly quiet” about hot button issues with a new essay in Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner’s newly launched “Lenny” newsletter.
In a new piece entitled “Why Do I Make Less Than My Male Co‑Stars?,” Lawrence examines the Hollywood pay gap through her own experiences and finds that staying silent about it is no longer a viable option for her.
Lawrence writes, “It’s hard for me to speak about my experience as a working woman because I can safely say my problems aren’t exactly relatable. When the Sony hack happened and I found out how much less I was being paid than the lucky people with dicks, I didn’t get mad at Sony. I got mad at myself. I failed as a negotiator because I gave up early.” But things started changing for Lawrence when she realized the impact her choices and attitude were making in a much larger sense: “I saw the payroll on the Internet and realized every man I was working with definitely didn’t worry about being ‘difficult’ or ‘spoiled.'”
The actress continues on in the must-read essay, noting other experiences (including time spent on film sets) that have served to change her mind even more fully. By the end, she’s got an entirely new stance on the entire issue, writing, “I’m over trying to find the ‘adorable’ way to state my opinion and still be likable! Fuck that. I don’t think I’ve ever worked for a man in charge who spent time contemplating what angle he should use to have his voice heard. It’s just heard.”
Despite Lawrence’s attempts to avoid trends (she comes right out in her piece and notes that she doesn’t “like joining conversations that feel like they’re ‘trending'”), her essay comes at a crucial time in confessional Hollywood actress essays. Just yesterday, Lennon Parham took to Medium to pen an essay entitled “I’ll be right back, Hollywood…I’m gonna go have a baby,” about her experiences trying to juggle her career with motherhood. Last week, Taraji P. Henson used her own Facebook page to share her thoughts on how to do her best work while also dealing with the emotional demands of her personal life.
If you’d like to read Lawrence’s full essay, you’ll need to sign up for Dunham and Konner’s newsletter Lenny, which you can do right here.