Thursday, February 10, 2005

Lack of magazines

I am finding that to my surprise, there seems to be very few wedding magazines here in Germany. I noticed this a few weeks ago, that my average store with several racks of magazines had no wedding magazines. At first, I didn't want to mention it here in the blog, as I thought "Aha! A gap in the market! I shall take this gap and claim it as my own!" But since this very entrepreneurial (and extremely over-ambitious) idea, I have come across 2 wedding magazines. Both entitled something exciting like "Hochzeit" (wedding in German). I finally tracked them down at a large magazine shop in the main train station, but I didn't have time to browse through them properly to pick one over the other. And as I was already carrying my briefcase from work, I didn't particularly feel like adding another kilo or so to the heavy load. I will get one this weekend though and tell you what I think of it next week.

I do wonder about this significant difference between Germany and North America. In Canada and the States, wedding magazines can easily be found in most places that sell magazines. Does that mean that North Americans are more pressured into getting married? How can our values or opinions be so different that they can create an entire publishing industry?

I've never really thought of Germany as being very supportive of women's movement. The idea of a woman's place being "Kirche, K├╝che, Kinder" (church, kitchen, children) is no longer said directly out loud, but lots of things about living here seem to indicate that it is still expected. Children finish school at 1 in the afternoon, which is not very conducive to both parents working, is it? I can name a very large company here in Germany where over 60% of the employees are women, but only 2% of the top management is female.

But now I wonder...

An entire industry built up in North America for getting married; easily 6 magazines to choose from in an average store. Here, I had to search to find two. Are North American women being led to believe that getting married is the ultimate achievement? For no matter how much you deny it, advertising has an effect.

1 comment:

Kathie said...

There are loads of wedding magazines in the UK too... don't think it has much to do with the actual being married or not thing. In my opinion, the Germans are simply less concerned with the actual wedding - if you were to say back home that you'd decided to get married in the registry office with just 2 people as witnesses, everyone would look at you like you were completely insane... here I know quite a few Germans who decided to do it that way!