Why Men Don’t Read Books

On the Huffington Post, writer and former book editor Jason Pinter argues that, contrary to the prevailing opinion, men will read, they’re just not being provided with the proper manly material (and, those ads for The Nook and The Kindle? They’d make any man run). Based mostly on anecdotal evidence, Pinter says the problem is that there are so many women in publishing (he says it’s “dominated” by women. That may be true in total numbers, but I’m willing to bet that an analysis of the numbers of women in top positions will show a different story. Among the “big six” publishers, for instance, Carolyn Reidy is the sole CEO).

On Salon, Laura Miller responds to the post and amusingly summarizes the 130 comments it brought. She accepts Pinter’s thesis and adds that men are not attracted to publishing because it “…increasingly resembles those ‘caring professions,’ nursing and teaching, where the joy of laboring selflessly on behalf of a noble cause — in this case, literature — is supposed to make up for the lack of profits and respect.”

You can’t help but wonder, though, over half the books on the NYT Fiction Best Seller list are written by men. Have they all been coerced by women editors into writing for the female audience?

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