I am tired of my husband telling me my “trash magazine” has arrived each weekend when I receive my People magazine! As I tell him, at least I’m reading something! I think so-called tabloid magazines such as People, US Weekly, Star, etc., are wrongly judged as being “meaningless” or for “uneducated” people. There are so many glorious benefits to reading these types of magazines!
Reading is an event to be enjoyed, and that is exactly what I’m doing as I sit and read my People late at night when the house is quiet. While I understand how sections such as “Who Wore It Best?” may be seen as trivial or superficial, it takes a great deal of analysis and critique to decide just this! Can you see all the brainwork involved yet?
While celebrities and sports stars usually grace the covers of these magazines, People magazine, for example, makes space for heart-felt articles such as ‘Heroes Among Us.’ Within these articles, we learn about everyday people doing extraordinary things that are both genuine and inspiring.
Also, as a personal generally uninterested in politics, I will occasionally learn a thing or two about a Senator or Congressman who has been behaving badly. Then, at least, I recognize their names when my husband is watching CNN. I feel impressed with myself that I’m continually learning from my dear tabloid magazines.
Adding to the surplus of skills I’m attaining when reading tabloid magazines, is the exposure to different textual structures. These magazines use a format different from the standard left-to- right-reading novel, and one that all people need to become familiar with. Texts come in numerous different formats and we, as readers, need to learn how to navigate around these passages and pictures to find just the information we’re looking for. Who cares if that information is “Who is Dating Who?”
Finally, I truly appreciate the “Letters to the Editor” section that many of these magazines incorporate. Being able to express our thoughts and feelings on any subject and then being published is a feeling of importance and validation. And for those uninterested in expressing yourselves, just being able to read and appreciate other people’s opinions is a lesson we want all children and adults, alike, to learn.
So, THANK YOU, “trashy” tabloid magazines for teaching me to be such a skilled reader! You are a valuable part of my continual literacy experiences! What’s more, you bring such happiness to my life and I look forward to our many years spent together.
P.S. I see you, hubby, reading my People when you think I’m in the other room!