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Bookmark: Gender and Reading Preferences

Goodreads Poll Finds that Readers Stick to Their Own Gender

Goodreads recently polled 40,000 British citizens on their reading habits and among the many trends that popped up, the one making the rounds today is all about sex. Namely, the surprising gender divide between male and female readers and the writers they prefer.

The survey found that men and women stick closely to their own camps with 90% of the 50 most-read books by men coming from male authors, and an identical 90% of the 50 most-read books by women coming from female authors. Female readers were also slightly more critical in their ratings of books penned by the opposite sex – giving them an average 3.8/5, compared to the 4/5 for works by female writers.


But what’s really disheartening is that we still tend to view books written by women as less substantial and less “important,” which — given Goodreads’ findings — may just say more about who’s in charge at the top newspapers and publishing houses than anything else.

See also: Goodreads' message board discussion on Your Reading Experience > Male or female authors


( 2 comments — Add your .02 )
Dec. 1st, 2014 11:17 pm (UTC)
Intresting! Of the 17 books I've read this year, 9 were by women and 8 were by men. I tend to focus more on subject matter than author's sex, although I do make a point of seeking out female writers and protagonists. I do notice that my journalistic non-fiction is written almost exclusively by men, and any "chick lit"/summer pool reading I've done is written by women.

Edited at 2014-12-01 11:18 pm (UTC)
Dec. 2nd, 2014 06:44 am (UTC)
My personal/fun reading is overwhelmingly women writers (either through fanfic, or through genre novels). My "work" reading is still largely women writers cos, er, that's my area of specialization.

I kind of want to do one of those things where you read nothing but X for a year, and see what it's like to only read contemporary women writers. (I've just spent a year reading 17th c. women writers, which is...different.)
( 2 comments — Add your .02 )

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