University of Kansas Study Criticizes Women’s Magazines Coverage of Health Issues

Crystal Lumpkins, an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Kansas, has completed a study of coverage of women’s health issues in popular women’s magazines. Professor Lumpkins surveyed the editorial content of four popular magazines: Ms., Redbook, Good Housekeeping, and Essence. She found that these magazines ignored, for the most part, health issues of particular concern to African American women. Essence is largely targeted at African American women.

Professor Lumpkins stated, “The health stories that were most reported were on reproductive and sexual health. Diabetes, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, all of these major health issues in the African American community were not addressed.”

Dr. Lumpkins concludes by stating, “I hope people understand magazines are an important vehicle for health communication, not just to African American women, but women in general. Yes, they are traditional, but they’ve proven to be effective.”

Dr. Lumpkins holds a bachelor’s degree and a Ph.D. in journalism from the University of Missouri at Columbia. She also earned a master’s degree in media communication and management from Webster University.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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