Magazines for the Millions: Gender and Commerce in the Ladies' Home Journal and the Saturday Evening Post, 1880-1910

By Helen Damon-Moore | Go to book overview

3
A New Editor and a New Voice:
Edward Bok Transforms the Journal, 1890-1900

As I have shown, the Ladies' Home Journal between 1883 and 1889 was a highly gendered, feminine text. The magazine regularly pronounced in these years that Louisa Knapp's gender particularly suited her to addressing the needs of her female readers. This emphasis meant that the magazine had to rationalize Edward Bok's ascension to the editorship. In JANUARY OF 1890 the Journal announced that Edward Bok was the magazine's new editor-in-chief. "With the fullest appreciation of the needs of a representative woman's periodical," the announcement read, "a tried experience, and the liveliest sympathy with everything appertaining to the elevation and instruction of woman-kind, Mr. Bok enters upon his duties thoroughly equipped for the position." 1

According to the Journal during this transitional period, Bok was the next best thing to a female editor: he was sympathetic to women, and his syndicated "Woman's Page" had given him some familiarity with editing a woman's periodical. Bok had a special understanding of feminine needs, the Journal reassured readers, that allowed him to both cater to and speak for women. As Mrs. Lyman Abbott declared in her new department, "Just Among Ourselves," "Dear Mr. Bok! I like him so much. I wish all the Journal sisters knew him. You would hardly believe that a man could know so well what we women want most. But he does, and he is so kind and willing!" 2 Likewise, Bok at the time described himself as "the mouthpiece of hearts and minds of your own sex behind me." 3

The Curtises certainly hired Bok because he had already worked on a limited basis with print materials targeting women, but the fact is that they valued his business experience even more highly. Bok had proven himself to be an adept businessman with a sure feel for late nineteenth-century middle-class tastes. The Curtises did not necessarily believe that a man would by definition be superior to a woman in editing a magazine. The always arrogant and often defensive Bok, however, believed in the natural superiority of male editors. In his autobiography Bok explained why men had come to dominate the ranks of mass-circulation magazine editors:

We may well ponder whether the full editorial authority and direction of a modern magazine, either essentially feminine in its appeal or not, can safely be entrusted to a woman when one considers how largely executive is the nature of such a position, and how thoroughly sensitive the modem editor must be to the 101 practical business matters which enter into and form so large a

-59-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Magazines for the Millions: Gender and Commerce in the Ladies' Home Journal and the Saturday Evening Post, 1880-1910
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 263

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.