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The Numbers Speak For Themselves

by Melissa Silverstein
February 2, 2011 4:51 AM
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This is day two of crappy stats about women in the creative business - this time, the literary world.

An organization named VIDA -- Women in Literary Arts -- has released a very disturbing survey that looks into the gender disparity between male and female writers at some of the world's top magazine. The numbers are abysmal.

Here's what they have to say:

The truth is, these numbers don’t lie. But that is just the beginning of this story. What, then, are they really telling us? We know women write. We know women read. It’s time to begin asking why the 2010 numbers don’t reflect those facts with any equity. Many have already begun speculating; more articles and groups are pointing out what our findings suggest: the numbers of articles and reviews simply don’t reflect how many women are actually writing.

The numbers speak for themselves.

The Atlantic: Women 55, Men 154
Boston Review: Women 93, Men 172
Granta: Women 26, Men 49
Harper's: Women 25, Men 94
London Review of Books: Women 74, Men 343
The New Republic: Women 49, Men 256
The New York Review of Books: Women 79, Men 462
New York Times Book Review: Women 295, Men 438
The New Yorker: Women 163, Men 499
The Paris Review: Women 32, Men 59
Poetry: Women 165, Men 246
The Threepenny Review: Women 25, Men 61
The Times Literary Supplement: Women 378, Men 1,075
Tin House: Women 29, Men 55

Check out all the numbers here.

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  • thomas brady | February 9, 2011 11:17 AMReply

    My website "Scarriet" weighs in on this issue.

  • Anita | February 4, 2011 9:04 AMReply

    Fustrating! Why is it that every sector bar 'girlie' ones are dominated by men? Is it because there is a gender bias or because women are not applying? Is it because men are better qualified or is it because women are not given opportunities? I would love an in- depth study to be published on this...

  • Wang | February 3, 2011 2:28 AMReply

    This narrative seeks gender parity where that may be the least of the desired qualities for selection. The subject, treatment, voice, perspective, cultural experience, gender, and so much more is an important matrix of the personality profile producing a product instead of "lets hire a female or male."
    That said, maybe a world in which the female voice is dominate would be an interesting subject for a project or projects to understand why the male voice is more dominate in the market-place and the world culture.

  • Cwyatt | February 2, 2011 9:25 AMReply

    I wish we could see these pie graphs for every business. I would LOVE to see the disparity between men and women in Animation.

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