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August 12, 2011 – October 30, 2011
American History Museum
12th and Constitution Ave., NW
Location: 2nd Floor, East Wing, Albert Small Documents Gallery
This exhibition explores the genius of actress and stand-up comic Phyllis Diller. Her comedic persona -- complete with zany costumes and raucous laugh -- pushed the boundaries and traditional values of her 1950s audience and broke the gender barrier present in stand-up comedy at the time. She paved the way for future generations of female comics. Objects on view include Diller's 48-drawer steel filing cabinet containing more than 50,000 jokes and gags, wig, wrist-length gloves, ankle boots, and bejeweled cigarette holder.