unhappy anniversary

08/25/17 09:26

There is no better illustration of the devolution of travel writing (periodicals division) than the 30th anniversary issue of Condé Nast Traveler, now on newsstands. The editor, in her letter to readers, tries to make a case for continuity, but she sabotages her argument by pasting above it a photo of the cover of the inaugural issue. You read the titles of the stories that ran in 1987, and the names of the people who wrote them – “Adrift up the Amazon,” Christopher Buckley, “A passion for Barcelona,” Robert Hughes – and then you turn the pages to find articles about luxury lodgings in Paris and Rome. The magazine’s original slogan still graces the cover: “Truth in Travel,” though it should now be changed to “Faith in Advertising.”

By Thomas Swick • Category: media

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