When Ms. was launched as a “one-shot” sample insert in New York Magazine in December 1971, few realized it would become the landmark institution in both women’s rights and American journalism that it is today.
The founders of Ms., many of whom are now household names, helped to shape contemporary feminism. According to founding editor Letty Cottin Pogrebin, Ms.‘ authors translated “a movement into a magazine.”
Ms. struck a chord with women and was the first U.S. magazine to feature prominent American women demanding the repeal of laws that criminalized abortion, the first to explain and advocate for the ERA, to rate presidential candidates on women’s issues, to put domestic violence and sexual harassment on the cover of a women’s magazine, to feature feminist protest of pornography, to commission and feature a national study on date rape, and to blow the whistle on the undue influence of advertising on magazine journalism.
Ms. was the first national magazine to make feminist voices audible, feminist journalism tenable, and a feminist worldview available to the public.
Today, the magazine remains an interactive enterprise in which an unusually diverse readership is simultaneously engaged with each other and the world. The modern Ms. boasts the most extensive coverage of international women’s issues of any magazine available in the United States.
And the magazine’s time-honored traditions-an emphasis on in-depth investigative reporting and feminist political analysis and the renowned “No Comment” section-have been supplemented with discussion of such subjects as environmental feminism, women’s work styles, and the politics of emerging technologies, bringing a new generation of writers and readers together to create the feminism of the future.