Magazines for the Millions

Gender and Commerce in the Ladies' Home Journal and the Saturday Evening Post, 1880-1910

By Helen Damon-Moore

Subjects: Women's Studies
Paperback : 9780791420584, 263 pages, August 1994
Hardcover : 9780791420577, 263 pages, August 1994

Alternative formats available from:

Table of contents



1. A Man, a Woman, and a New Magazine: Cyrus Curtis and Louisa Knapp Curtis and the Ladies' Home Journal, 1883–1889

2. From Gendered Lives to a Gendered Magazine: The Content of the Journal, 1883–1889

3. A New Editor and a New Voice: Edward Bok Transforms the Journal, 1890–1900

4. Mixed Messages in a Commercial Package: The Content of the Journal, 1890–1900

5. Creating a Magazine for Men: Curtis Gets the Post and the Post Gets Lorimer, 1897–1900

6. Speaking to and about Men: The Content of the Post, 1897–1900
7. The Journal is for Women and the Post is for Families: The Vicissitudes of the Curtis Magazines, 1900–1910
8. Oppositions and Overlaps in Views of Women and Men: The Content of the Journal and the Post Compared, 1900–1910
Methodological Note

Helen Damon-Moore is Adjunct Professor of Women's Studies and Education at Cornell College. She is co-author of Literacy in the United States: Readers and Reading Since 1880.


"Helen Damon-Moore's Magazines for the Millions is both entertaining and analytical, loaded with telling comparisons of the Ladies' Home Journal and the Saturday Evening Post, sharp observations about the magazines' content, their production, and readers' responses. Her insights about gender construction are important for all readers interested in popular culture. I found fascinating the story of how the Post floundered as a men's magazine while the Journal soared on the wings of 'gendered commerce. ' The book is a fine example of a new genre of studies of the history of print culture. " — Carl Kaestle, University of Wisconsin-Madison

"Before Hugh Hefner, Ted Turner, and Oprah Winfrey there were Cyrus and Louisa Curtis, Edward Bok, and George Horace Lorimer. In this incisive cultural study, Helen Damon-Moore brings vividly alive the world of the great mass magazines that shaped the outlook of generations of Americans. Exploiting primary sources and current theoretical perspectives, Damon-Moore documents the magazines' role in the commercialization of gender and the gendering of commerce. Magazines for the Millions merits the close attention of all students of American popular culture—and anyone looking for a good read. " — Paul Boyer, Institute for Research in the Humanities

"In this absorbing history of the early years of the Saturday Evening Post and the Ladies' Home Journal, Helen Damon-Moore provides a penetrating look into the construction of gender in America's first mass-circulation magazines. Anyone interested in the evolution of modern ideals of femininity and masculinity will profit from reading Damon-Moore's account of these two formative institutions. " — Rosalind Rosenberg, Barnard College