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Intellectuals began accusing women's magazines of perpetuating feminine stereotypes decades ago. McCall's was the fastest growing of that genre in the 1960s when Betty Frieden wrote "A Feminine Mystique," criticizing stories published in McCall's and similar publications that included traditional, gender-solidifying topics. Forty years later, health is the hot topic for women's general interest magazines, which regularly promote wellness and medical features. These articles can provide valuable information overlooked by the mainstream press, according to researcher Barbara Barnett from the University of Kansas. But the coverage women receive from them often focus on superficial topics and reinforce women stereotypes as caregivers, she says.
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