Feminism is “an old-fashioned concept” and “doesn’t seem relevant," according to Sarah Beardsley, the 47-year-old publisher of Venus magazine, which she recently purchased from the two real estate agents who had themselves purchased the magazine only a few years earlier from its founder, Amy Schroeder. As reported by the Chicago Reader, Beardsley’s solution for saving the zine seems to leave any association with the dreaded F-word behind. “She told me she's not a feminist and feminism is what hindered the magazine in the past,” one unnamed source told the Reader. Instead, Beardsley plans to focus her newly purchased mag on, in her words, “an extended community of people who want to be part of—movement's too strong a word, but cause—something people believe in, an aesthetic being built from the ground up.” Hmm. A community of people who want to be part of a cause that people believe in? Nah, feminism is nothing like that.
The magazine, which began life as a zine focused on women in music, had ceased publication last September, and has just released its first issue under Beardsley. Whether the new, feminism-free version of the troubled mag will succeed remains to be seen. And if it does, what would that say about feminism?
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