VIDA, the women’s literary organization distilling gender disparity at top literary magazines, released its byline count this week. Many small literary magazines boasted gender equality this last year, but the biggest and most prestigious mags (The New York Review of Books, Harper’s, the New Republic) remained overwhelmingly male. The Paris Review was the big winner, however, jumping from 20 percent female bylines in 2012 to 56 percent in 2013! Second place went to The New York Times Book Review, which, under new editor Pamela Paul, climbed from 44 percent to 48 percent female reviewers. Nice work, ladies.
Also noteworthy is a shout out to The Boston Review, Poetry Magazine, and Tin House for consistently maintaining gender equality in their bylines.
It’s great to see the gender bias normalizing, and efforts made by those like VIDA are doing wonders toward this goal. However, a recent article in the guardian points out that men still greatly outnumber women in arts publications, offering a wonderful summary of the VIDA count that is worth reading if you’re at all interested (and you should be!) in this important issue.