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Magazine / The New Yorker

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Eustace Tilley with butterfly.

The New Yorker is a weekly literary, cultural, and news magazine published in New York City by print media giant Condé Nast. Since its debut on February 21, 1925, it has produced more than 4,000 issues. Its website has more expansive content, including videos, podcasts, and additional short news articles that did not get published.

The magazine has a reputation for being both painfully highbrow (or high-middlebrow, at least) and politically liberal, and a significant portion of its content is devoted to cultural and lifestyle explorations of New York and its environs. Despite these characteristics, the magazine is read widely by non-New Yorkers, and is recognized throughout the United States as a kind of shorthand signifier of metropolitan and urbane sensibilities, similar to broadcasting's NPR and PBS.


The New Yorker is also renowned for the collection of iconic cover art it has produced, as well as the short fiction, essays, poems, and one-panel cartoons that are included in every issue. Charles Addams, Woody Allen, John Cheever, Roald Dahl, Alice Munro, Ogden Nash, Dorothy Parker, S. J. Perelman, James Thurber, E. B. White, and Gahan Wilson are among the more famous of the authors and artists it has employed or published over the decades.

It is also noted for its long nonfiction articles, such as John Hersey's 31,000-word piece on the bombing of Hiroshima, which was published as the only article of the August 31, 1946 edition of the magazine.

In 2016 it spun off a television series called The New Yorker Presents, available via Amazon Prime and featuring a format not entirely unlike the magazine's, presenting short segments covering a variety of topics and using the magazine's iconic cartoons as intermissions.


Features examples of:

  • Antiquated Linguistics: In addition to being sticklers for grammar and omitting needless verbiage, the magazine's copy-editing department is known for their old-fashioned stylistic choices, like spelling out all numbers in full no matter how convoluted it is, hypenating words that have long dropped the hyphen in common usage (e.g. "to-day" and "teen-ager"), using old spellings of words that are almost never used (e.g. "focussed" instead of "focused") and using a diaeresis instead of a hyphen (e.g. "coöperate", instead of "co-operate" or "cooperate").
  • Big Applesauce: One of the major promoters of the trope.
  • The Burlesque of Venus: The May 25, 1992 and August 4, 2014 covers emulate The Birth of Venus.
  • Caption Contest: Runs one every week with one of its cartoons.
  • Caustic Critic: Many of the critics for arts wrote there including the most caustic of them all, Pauline Kael.
  • Creator Provincialism: Lampshaded in "View of the World from 9th Avenue", Saul Steinberg's cover illustration for the March 29, 1976 issue (seen as the page image for the aforementioned Big Applesauce trope).
  • Joisey: Like any good Manhattanite.
  • Logo Joke: For decades it was traditional for the magazine to commemorate its anniversary each February by reproducing Rea Irvin's cover illustration from the inaugural issue, shown above. However, in recent years the anniversary issues have featured new, reader-submitted covers that re-imagine or parody the original. (Examples here, here, here.)
  • Mascot: Eustace Tilley, the top-hatted Regency-era dandy examining a butterfly through his monocle as depicted in the aforementioned inaugural cover.
  • Phony Article: House cartoonists are sometimes used to advertise products.
  • Satire: The Borowitz Report is a comedy section of the magazine written in the style of its own more factual fare, leading to much confusion among unfamiliar readers, though there is a disclaimer at the head of every article telling the reader that it is satire.
  • Serious Business: The proper rules of grammar must always be observed!


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