• U.S.

A Letter From The Publisher, Apr. 3, 1944

4 minute read

To answer some of the questions our subscribers have been asking about how TIME gathers, verifies, writes and distributes its news.

She’s a brunette, and she wears her hair short. Her eyes are blue. She is 5 ft. 4 in. tall and weighs 132 Ib. (but she wishes she could take off six of them).

Ever since I told you how TIME’S typical man-reader looks, lives, and makes his living (TIME, Jan. 17) letters have been coming in asking about the typical TIME woman. So this week I thought I’d introduce her to you.

If you (or your wife) are anything like this typical TIME woman, you are married, have more than one child (1.25, to be unrealistically statistical), and live in a home of your own (38.9% of you say your yard is big enough to land a helicopter in).

If you go to business at all it’s 9 to 1 you work in an office rather than in a factory—and if you are in a profession it is likely to be teaching. But the odds are 2 to 1 your only job is being a wife and mother —and apparently you are pretty good at it.

You do a lot of cooking yourself (even though you still employ a total of 635,000 full-or part-time servants) and it must be pretty tasty, for your husbands vote almost unanimously that the meals you serve are better than they get at their favorite restaurants . . .you make sure you know what’s at the movies before you let the children go … you go to church (more often than your husband does) . . . you keep up with other reading as well as the news (you own 241 books, buy about eight new ones a year) . . . you like to entertain, have guests in for dinner at least one evening a week . . . you make fudge at home, you play the piano and see that at least someone in the family takes vitamins on schedule.

You are not just a homebody (especially in these wartime days). You are up to your ears in some kind of war work (most likely the Red Cross or the A.W.V.S.). You give a lot of your time and $84,000,000 a year in cash to charity. Almost surely you belong to a women’s club (quite probably one of the thousands which make up their current affairs programs with the help of the TIME Club Bureau). And when you go out of an evening you do your husband proud—for you own about three evening gowns (your husband thinks you should have even more).

In many ways you are very much like your husband. You both seem to take an almost equal interest in TIME and the news. You both vote gardening your favorite hobby—both say They Were Expendable is the book you most enjoyed last year—both report your favorite radio programs are Information, Please and Fibber McGee & Molly. But you play more bridge than he does, and you read a little more than he does, and your second and third choice books were Our Hearts Were Young and Gay and The Robe, while his were Berlin Diary and See Here, Private Hargrove.

There are over 1,210,000 of you reading TIME each week now. That is more than seven times as many women readers as that famous favorite among women, Godey’s Lady’s Book, ever had in its heyday.

Perhaps Mrs. G. L. Campbell of Franklin, Ohio, expressed women’s interest in TIME best when she said: “I read TIME because I am a wife, determined to keep as well-informed as my husband—because I am a mother, expected by my children to know all the answers—and finally, because I am a woman, naturally inquisitive about what is going on.”


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