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Lena Dunham – the New Queen of Comedy, according to American Vogue – lands her first Vogue cover for the publication’s February 2014 issue, which hits newsstands January 28.

Looking slightly perturbed, the actress wears a red-and-white polka-dot Burberry Prorsum shirt and heavy sixties-style eye makeup on the cover, wearing Prada, Rochas, Alexander McQueen and Dolce & Gabbana for the rest of the editorial, shot by Annie Leibovitz.

She talks to Vogue about dating, her privacy, on being popular as a child and why ‘Girls’ is different from other shows.

Here are some extracts from her interview. Read more over at Vogue.com.

On ‘Girls’ being different from other shows: “There was a sense that I and many women I knew had been led astray by Hollywood and television depictions of sexuality. Seeing somebody who looks like you having sex on television is a less comfortable experience than seeing somebody who looks like nobody you’ve ever met. Critics said, ‘That guy wouldn’t date that girl!’ It’s like, ‘Have you been out on the street lately?’ Everyone dates everyone, for lots of reasons we can’t understand. Sexuality isn’t a perfect puzzle, like, ‘He has a nice nose and she has a nice nose! She’s got great breasts and he’s got great calves! And so they’re going to live happily ever after in a house that was purchased with their modelling money!’ It’s a complicated thing. I want people ultimately, even if they’re disturbed by certain moments, to feel bolstered and normalized by the sex that’s on the show.”

On being a private person: “No one would describe me as a private person, but I actually really am. It’s important for me to have a lot of time alone, and to have a lot of time in my house by myself. My entire life sort of takes place between me and my dog, my books, and my boyfriend, and my private world. To me, privacy isn’t necessarily equated with secret-keeping. What’s private is my relationship with myself.”

On her young self: “I thought of myself as relatively unpopular. It wasn’t anybody’s fault—I didn’t go to high school with mean kids—but I didn’t feel part of it. . . I didn’t really start to feel like I had friends in a real way until I graduated from college and became engaged with the people I’d be engaged with professionally.”

Credit: Annie Leibovitz for Vogue