The 2013 VIDA Count is in: “Two steps forward, one step back”

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VIDA — Women in Literary Arts has completed its annual gender parity count of publications that cover literature, which it characterized as “two steps forward, one step back.” VIDA tracks key publications (newspaper literary supplements, magazines, and journals) to see how many books by women are reviewed and how many of the reviewers are women.

The 2013 “VIDA Count” shows improvement by a few key publications in reaching gender parity, particularly The Paris Review. Poetry maintains its balance. Tin House, Callaloo, Conjunctions, The Gettysburg Review, n+1, The Missouri Review, Ninth Letter, New American Writing, and Prairie Schooner published a slight majority of reviews by women or reviews of books by women. Several other publications approached gender parity in 2013.

Some of the “dinosaurs” are continuing to emphasize books by men, as well as the use of male book reviewers. The prime offenders are the Times (of London) Literary Supplement (TLS), The Atlantic, London Review of Books, New Republic, The Nation, New York Review of Books, and The New Yorker.


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