We received several copies of the issue of Older Women and Education. Since the cover is the first element of any publication which readers notice and examine, what prompted you to picture the female senior in a stained, spotted coat? If you are attempting to highlight the value of education as a positive factor in stimulating and maintaining seniors' interest in their communities, your cover had the opposite effect.
Several of our seniors did not want to look into a magazine that pictures female seniors in such a negative way. Several also wanted to know why the male had no stain on his coat. They felt that senior women are too often depicted as helpless, powerless individuals. Your cover seems to promote that image. Our group did enjoy the magazine's contents, especially, the "Lives Full of Learning". With such worthwhile content, why the atrocious cover? Older is equivalent neither to poor not to messy, unkempt, or careless.
The Recollections Group
Editor's Note: The "stains" that appear on one woman's coat are not in the original photo and are an unfortunate result of a smudge in the printing process. The photo was chosen for its composition as well as for the reality it depicts of many older women's lives. The photographer, Elaine Briere, describes it this way: "While walking in Vancouver one day I noticed two older ladies helping each other slowly make their way home. I asked if I could take their picture and afterwards I took their bags and walked them home. They told me they'd moved in together and were fending off the isolation and solitude of old age that way. The photo speaks to me of positive human values, of the way they are helping each other and the way they've defied conventional norms by deciding to live the rest of their lives together."
Thank you for your recent package continuing the Autumn 1990 issue. This particular issue focusing on education and older women is most interesting and a topic rarely given much attention. As per your resource list at the back of the book, you obviously weren't aware of our seniors' organization. Here is the address and a contact person for future reference:
N.W.T. Seniors Association Box 25
I will also be sending information to my mother in Kamloops, B.C. for their seniors' association! Best wishes with your magazine and keep in touch!
Hello! This is just a short note to say that we would love to have a subscription exchange with Women's Education des femmes. Our first issue was published in June 1989 as a project of East Coast Women and Words. In January 1991 Waterlily will become an independent publication but our vision as a feminist paper for the women of our province shall remain the same.
Gaile Hall for the Waterlily Collective