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Feminist Consciousness and the Production of a Contemporary Women's Section
Unformatted Document Text:  Tracking number: ICA-12-11416 22 Mertz acknowledges both the “hit and miss” concept and also the struggle for resources, particularly space, that Ettenhofer noted. Mertz explained, “There are days when I go back and look at a section … when you look at the three [stories] together, you think, ‘Oh, this could be perceived to be negative or old fashioned or whatever.’ It happens by accident. I try to make a good effort of balance.” She also said tighter resources and space restrain her. This becomes an issue for Mertz, she said, because “Savvy can get treated as a dumping ground.” Mertz explained, “People will say, ‘We don’t know where to put this, let’s put it in Savvy.’ Just because you’re a woman doesn’t mean other women in the community will be interested in what you have to say.” Conclusion The decline of female readership has caused U.S. newspapers to come up with specific – if maybe not so innovate – ways to appeal to this segment of the population. In the case of The Capital Times, the answer has been to reintroduce a section specifically for women. Clearly, this contemporary women’s section is perceived by its producers to be different from traditional women’s pages. But this difference, based on a broadened definition of women’s role in society, could simply be an awareness of cultural changes rather than a feminist consciousness informing decision making. Either way, feminist ideologies, rather consciously or subconsciously, influence the production of Savvy. But this feminist consciousness presents itself unevenly and often is fractured by stereotypical conceptions of women that are dominant in our patriarchal society. Clearly the Savvy editor constructs her section through a feminist lens. Her feminist perspective also leads her to question the correctness of having a special section

Authors: Harp, Dustin.
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Tracking number: ICA-12-11416
22
Mertz acknowledges both the “hit and miss” concept and also the struggle for
resources, particularly space, that Ettenhofer noted. Mertz explained, “There are days
when I go back and look at a section … when you look at the three [stories] together, you
think, ‘Oh, this could be perceived to be negative or old fashioned or whatever.’ It
happens by accident. I try to make a good effort of balance.” She also said tighter
resources and space restrain her. This becomes an issue for Mertz, she said, because
“Savvy can get treated as a dumping ground.” Mertz explained, “People will say, ‘We
don’t know where to put this, let’s put it in Savvy.’ Just because you’re a woman doesn’t
mean other women in the community will be interested in what you have to say.”
Conclusion
The decline of female readership has caused U.S. newspapers to come up with
specific – if maybe not so innovate – ways to appeal to this segment of the population. In
the case of The Capital Times, the answer has been to reintroduce a section specifically
for women. Clearly, this contemporary women’s section is perceived by its producers to
be different from traditional women’s pages. But this difference, based on a broadened
definition of women’s role in society, could simply be an awareness of cultural changes
rather than a feminist consciousness informing decision making. Either way, feminist
ideologies, rather consciously or subconsciously, influence the production of Savvy. But
this feminist consciousness presents itself unevenly and often is fractured by stereotypical
conceptions of women that are dominant in our patriarchal society.
Clearly the Savvy editor constructs her section through a feminist lens. Her
feminist perspective also leads her to question the correctness of having a special section


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