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Inside Ms.: 25 Years of the Magazine and the Feminist Movement Paperback – August 1, 1998


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt & Co (P) (August 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805058451
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805058451
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,398,159 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Ms., the American magazine that has reflected and whipped up feminist sentiment for a quarter of a century, is the subject of this absorbing insider account by Mary Thom, who worked her way up from researcher to executive editor. Thom dips into the feminist movement, focusing on events or trends that overlapped with the politics and interests of Ms. staffers. The magazine illuminated domestic abuse, sexual harassment, and violence against women and sparked acrimonious debates on issues where feminists disagreed, such as pornography, child rearing, and making the mainstream movement more palatable by cutting out certain groups. An undeniable partisan, Thom glosses over many fights, mistakes, and thick-headed actions, but turns in an engaging portrait of the personalities and times that shaped the magazine. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

July 1997 marks the 25th anniversary of Ms. magazine. Thom attended the planning meetings that launched the magazine and is still listed as a contributing editor. Her personal experiences, combined with interviews of colleagues, form the basis of this history, which recounts how against the backdrop of the feminist activities of the early 1970s, a group of editors and writers led by founding editors Gloria Steinem and Patricia Carbine strategized to create a radically different kind of magazine for women. Thom offers detailed portraits of the women involved, from Steinem to many lesser-known editors and writers. She covers the magazine's financial struggles, its role in the women's movement, and its relationship with readers. Although she mentions negative issues, such as accusations of middle-class bias and racism, Thom fails to take a critical look at Ms.'s role in the women's movement or in publishing history. Despite this drawback, libraries with women's studies collections will want to purchase.
-?Judy Solberg, George Washington Univ., Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 30, 1997
Format: Hardcover
Here is a lucid and sprightly account of the magazine that articulated the new language of feminism and turned it into today's lingua franca. From its inception, Ms. invigorated and infuriated readers---sometimes both at once. Thom's telling is both history and yarn. She puts you inside the office as the magazine's staff create the voice of the feminist movement, aware each month that every word counts, mindful of the fact that the magazine was becoming benchmark and buzzword for both its adherents and its detractors, convinced that they are making history. So they did. Thom's book captures the spirit of the moment: the earnestness, the laughs, the ideologies, the personalities, the drama of life at a publication whose influence went far beyond its circulation figures
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Robin Orlowski on March 8, 2001
Format: Paperback
When it first debuted in 1972, Ms. was assailed by conservatives for being too radical and other feminists for being too moderate and accomodating. Yet, the magazine has survived many incarnations and near death experiences (especially in the late 1980's with Anne Summers at the helm)to advocate for women's full equality.
In the process, the magazine started a revolution whose reverberations continue to be felt even in today's supposedly post-feminist generation. Ms. has become such an integral part of the American vocabulary (feminist and non-feminist alike) that it is impossible to imagine a time when advertisers were not aware of the word (this happened for the first couple of issues)and nobody was sure how to pronounce it.
Never enjoying circulation equivalent to Time, Life or other mainstream publications, Ms. magazine had an undeniable impact on the psyche of American society. Defying conventional wisdom which held innagural issues were especially supposed to be devoid of controversy, the magazine published a list of prominent American women who had undergone illegal abortions and wanted repeal of laws restricting women's reproductive rights.
Even though the magazine itself had several writers with extensive prior experience, it was committed (especially in the early days) to non-hierarchial management and production. While this ethos would later become modified and refined, it proved these people were dedicated to practicing the equality they preached about. Ms. was also one of the first magazines to offer day care for the children of its employees.
Certainly, most people will think of Gloria Steinem, but she would be the first to downplay her role in publicizing the magazine.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 17, 1999
Format: Paperback
Mary Thom has really done an excellent job with this book. Ostensibly its about the creation, development, and impact of Ms. magazine, but you wind up learning so much else about the feminist movement, about the personalities surrounding the magazine, and about the times in general. I totally recommend it for anyone interested in any of the above topics, or anyone looking for a good read.
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Format: Hardcover
Gloria Steinem is one of my feminist heroes. Fascinating read about Ms. Magazine.
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