Last week, Gay Talese faced much criticism after saying at a Boston conference that he had not been influenced by any women writers of his generation. At Slate, Isaac Chotiner points out that Talese’s recent article in the New Yorker, about a hotel owner in Colorado who spied on his guests, reveals “an even darker side” of the author. The article is, Chotiner states, “a failure of journalistic ethics and a revealing window into Talese’s character,” not least because Talese, in writing the piece, joined the hotel owner and spied on people himself. Meanwhile, Washington Post editor Marisa Bellack has written a story about why she quit her job as Talese’s teaching assistant: “because of his sexism.”
Historian Dr. Jelani Cobb, a staff writer at the New Yorker and the author of The Substance of Hope: Barack Obama and the Paradox of Progress, has joined the faculty of Columbia’s graduate school of journalism.
In response to a critical editorial in the Boston Globe, which ran in the same issue that featured a front-page satirical piece imagining what would happen if Trump became president, Donald Trump called the paper “worthless” and “stupid.”
Bylines by women writers are apparently on the rise, but women writers are, according to a study of more than 10,000 book reviews conducted by theNew Republic, still limited by stereotypes. The data from the study points to significant differences in the ways that books by men and women are covered. “Book reviewers are three or four times more likely to use words like ‘husband,’ ‘marriage,’ and ‘mother’ to describe books written by women between 2000 and 2009, and nearly twice as likely to use words like ‘love,’ ‘beauty,’ and ‘sex.’ Conversely, reviewers are twice as likely to use words like ‘president’ and ‘leader,’ as well as ‘argument’ and ‘theory,’ to describe books written by men.”