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Chewing the gender discrepancy fat

By Harriet Staff

Susan Steinberg and Cate Marvin of VIDA:Women in Literary Arts are crunching numbers and taking names. They did the math for the Rumpus to determine the online literary magazine’s gender equality quotient. One statistic cited reveals that of all authors interviewed by the Rumpus since January 2010, 24 were men, 14 were women.

So how did the Rumpus rate overall? Not great, but not awful either. Write Steinberg and Marvin:

Be assured: The Rumpus’ stats are not exactly what we’d consider ideal. But they actually demonstrate a fairer take with regard to gender than many other major literary venues that purport to tell us what we ought to read.

We noted, however, that the number of male authors who review the books and, more significantly, the male authors whose books are reviewed, for some reason or another, has risen significantly in its most recent issues. What can this tell us? That men are generally more disposed to write reviews during the summer months? That huddling around the BBQ makes them feel more inclined to review books by men?

The ladies of VIDA are making noise all over the place. Read more about VIDA’s work in this Slate article about unconscious male bias in the literary world.


Posted in Uncategorized on Tuesday, September 14th, 2010 by Harriet Staff.