Wednesday, 3 July 2013

The magazine debate

"Maybe you should put down the mindless magazines, Bethany." - The words of a teacher regarding me reading Vogue between classes which have long since they were said, about three months ago, echoed through my brain at intervals. It was the first time that I truly noticed the negative connotations attached to magazines, specifically those focused on fashion. It seems that the whole industry has a stigma that leaves people believing that Vogue, InStyle, Company and the like are unstimulating, unintelligent and act as a contaminant in the world of literature.

I can only assume that those who conform to such opinions have never actually read or even considered reading a high end fashion magazine. Those mentioned above are a far cry from brainless. The articles are in fact quite the opposite of unstimulating, often delving deeply into the social reasoning behind particular trends and fashion occurrences. Not only that, but the writing always has a subtle beauty about it; each article acts as an elongated poem with a handsome use of structure, vocabulary and flow. Just through looking at a single issue of Vogue, words including patrician, fripperies, regale, diligence and emulate can be read (July’s issue in case you were wondering). Hardly the “OMGs” and “LOLs” that are perhaps expected.
This extensive use of vocabulary means that the magazines are fairly intellectually stretching, especially for young readers such as myself, still constantly learning new lexicon. As though the varying language isn’t enough, it’s undeniable that my love of fashion magazines has improved my ability to write vastly in other areas too. I feel as though I’m now capable of compiling well structured, thought out and concise articles when required.

Even those magazines that are aimed at an audience in less want of something hugely stretching manage to raise social and ethical issues in their articles.  For example, recent issues of Company (a personal favourite of mine) have looked at feminism in modern day society and the pressure on women to maintain a low weight in today’s world. Yet, among such serious topics, they manage to keep the magazines entertaining. Sprinkled in between the heavier articles are light hearted interludes which make such magazines invaluable as part of how I relax. At such points abbreviations are totes more acceptable!

So, whether I’m looking for something to completely stimulate my brain with intellectually brilliant articles, or am more on the lookout for relaxing entertainment that still doesn’t become fatuous, there’s always a magazine I can turn to.
Even those sections of fashion magazines with no writing whatsoever – the photo shoot spreads – still provide some benefit.  Through my many years of close magazine analysis, I feel that most of the fashion shoots have inspired me in some way. They’ve encouraged me to be creative in the way I dress which has in turn, improved my confidence in everyday life. They also allow the reader to explore many aspects of modern culture further improving their social awareness. Plus, surely only positive effects can come of allowing your eyes to roam over something so beautiful!

Perhaps out of all the copious benefits I could list that come of reading fashion magazines, for me the main one is simple - I enjoy them. From cover to cover I get a sense of excitement and pure happiness. For some time, I’m able to focus on a topic I love and stretch my mind in the way I wish to, which prepares me for other challenges later on.
“Maybe you should put down the mindless magazines, Bethany.”
“No thank you sir, I find them to be rather beneficial, actually.”
Bethany Paige X

No comments:

Post a Comment