I have as many hangups about Cosmopolitan as the next feminist, but I love editor-in-chief Joanna Coles’ mission to make the magazine and its website a more well-rounded read. In an interview with NPR this morning, Coles, who has been in the position just two years, made it clear that she actually gives a damn about heavier topics like across-the-aisle politics and reproductive rights. She also pointedly defended a woman’s right to be a multi-faceted person who cares about both serious issues and lighter things in life (what a novel concept). Emily Ratajkowski of “Gone Girl” (and the “Blurred Lines” video) is on the cover of this month’s issue baring lots of skin, but the magazine also includes a lengthy article advising women on how to ask for a raise. To me, that seemed pretty cool — why shouldn’t a Cosmo reader be able to enjoy her sexuality and still kick ass in her professional life? This exchange followed, which Coles defended like a boss: Keep reading »
On Monday night at a media industry event, a reporter from Capital New York asked Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles about her magazine and feminism. Coles responded that Cosmo is “deeply feminist,” and covers issues like “equal pay for equal work,” “sensible control for guns,” and “access to contraception and access to abortion, should, God forbid, you need one.”
“There’s nothing more mainstream than equal pay for equal work. I mean, it’s completely obvious that’s what feminism should be for, and for women’s right to choose what happens to their own bodies. It’s unbelievable in 2013 we happen to be talking about this, but the battle over healthcare, the battle for women’s right to choose their own contraception, that ludicrous panel full of old men in Washington ruling what women could and couldn’t do—where is feminism then? Where are all the left-wing academics? Actually, Cosmo has been out there clamoring all along for this.”
Some feminists are not so happy about this, perceiving Coles’ remarks as dismissive of academics in areas like gender studies, race theory, history and others that have had a direct result on feminist advances of the 20th and 21st century. But I’m actually happy that the editor of the most major women’s mag in America didn’t run screaming in the other direction when the F-word came up.
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Just as inexplicable as the recent obsession over Silly Bandz is the love for YouTube haul vlogs. Intrepid young “reporters” spend hours creating their own videos, where they simply show off their latest purchases, detailing the reasons they love or hate the new products, thanks to the magic of web cams and the vast world of the internet. Thrilling, we know. Joanna Coles, the editor-in-chief of Marie Claire, decided to put her own little jokey spin on the internet fad and methodically dumped the contents of her Celine bag to create her own haul vlog. She, quite seriously, discusses the fears she experienced while buying the purse, why she favors certain makeup brands, her excitement for the DVD she found at the bottom of her bag and proudly shows off the bookmark made by her son. It’s refreshing to see an editor of a magazine embrace the internet’s habits, while feeling free to appear just a little bit silly. We promise you’ll be amused, as well as shocked by just how many lipsticks she carries around on a daily basis. Keep reading »