Thursday, 1 June 2017

Canadian Homemakers Magazines

Cast your mind back to recall the magazines that came into your home as a child. Did you read Time, Reader's Digest, (Toronto) Saturday Night, Maclean's, along with the newspaper published Star Weekly and Weekend Magazine, all popular general interest magazines?
Likely there were also specialist publications like Canadian Home Journal and Chatelaine aimed at homemakers.  Were you raised with advice gleaned from these publications?

The Canadian Home Journal, published from 1905 to 1958, addressed female readers, promoted Canadian authors, and circulated advertisements for consumer products appealing primarily to residents of Ontario, and an older demographic.  The Journal was also religious, publishing pieces by ministers and referring to religious authorities regarding questions of child-rearing, marriage, and community.
A few early issues, to 1922, are available on the Internet Archive.

Chatelaine first published in March 1928 to serve the needs of the Canadian woman readers from coast-to-coast, whether living in remote farms or urban centres. The vision was the stereotypical , Canadian woman, white, middle-class, and heterosexual; her chief preoccupations marriage, child-rearing, and home management. Whilst these were the magazine's overarching concerns health, beauty, and keeping up with current events and engagement with Canada’s arts and letters were part of the content.
Change happened in 1957 when feminist Doris Anderson took over the position of editor. The magazine began publishing more controversial content, including articles about sex and women's rights.
Chatelaine, while still published, is now a bimonthly.

The above summarizes some of the information from Magazines, Travel and Middlebrow Culture in Canada 1925-1960, a website from the University of Strathclyde. It includes a few sample issues and tables of contents for sample issues. The Canadian Writing Research Collaboratory also has a few issues between 1925 and 1932. Otherwise check major repositories, such as Library and Archives Canada, which may hold copies, likely on microfilm.

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