More so the magazine of the decade rather than merely 'of the moment', Womankind is hands down the best magazine I have ever read, and I've only read two issues thus far.
Published by the same team who run Australian magazine New Philosopher, Womankind is a quarterly magazine that caters especially for, you guessed it, women. Seeing a gap in the market, comprised of women who found themselves sick of 'the noise out there - the fashion, celebrity-focused, diet and nonsense fueled world of women's magazines', Womankind was born. Within its pages you won't find a single advertisement, meaning it relies solely on sales. Perhaps this seems like a risky route to take, but it appears to have worked. Launched only last year at the Byron Bay Writers' Festival in July 2014, where it was the best selling item in the festival's history, Womankind has garnered a firm and impressive following of women who are, like myself, appreciative of how refreshing and intelligent the content is.
The articles in each issue range from a variety of things which are influenced by different schools of thought. As literary editor of New Philosopher Antonia Case summarized, Womankind "brings the best ideas [we] can from philosophy, sociology and economics." Despite this seemingly academic approach, Case insisted that the magazine itself isn't 'academic'. Indeed, each article manages to be enlightening, thought provoking but also incredibly engaging. In fact, Womankind is probably one of the few magazines which I have read from front to cover, being immersed in the words the entire way.
Asides from this, Womankind also includes articles written by authors and quite a lot of articles about art (which I adore). To compliment this, the design of Womankind is stunning, making each turn of the page a delight. Each issue tends to have a different theme as well; in the recent issue, gorgeous water colour images of bees made repeated appearances throughout the publication, whereas the previous issue featured cute cat pictures.
Womankind achieves a certain kind of balance between the pretty aesthetics of the magazine's visuals and the serious topics it presents. Indeed,Womankind reflects intelligent and worldly women from all over the world and through their stories, the magazine succeeds in catering to 'a broad demographic of women who are looking for a better understanding of the world around them'. In the recent issue, a lengthy, empowering feature article discusses the continued perseverance and astounding achievements of Frida Kahlo despite her numerous misfortunes. Another article presents a story on 'Women as Revolutionaries'; specifically, a group of women in Mexico called the Zapatistas who fight for gender equality.
Flipping through Womankind, I am reminded of a quote voiced by none other than Jess from New Girl:
“I break for birds. I rock a lot of polka dots. I have touched glitter in the last 24 hours! And that doesn’t mean I’m not smart and tough and strong.”
Reading it, I cannot help but feel inspired. I can't help but feel reassured that my delicate sensibilities are not 'weak' characteristics. You can be strong in many different ways, and the endurance of women throughout the ages never ceases to amaze and motivate me. I am so glad that this magazine exists, as I am able to gain more exposure to stories about women who are changing the world, and in turn, I feel that I too can make a difference, no matter how big or small my efforts may be.
*Womankind is currently on sale in Australia and the US at selected news agencies, but for those from other countries, individual issues or subscriptions can be made through their website.
*Quoted exerts via Mumbrella