An evaluation of the depiction of successful womanhood in two popular Kenyan magazines

Author: Wanyama, Minneh Waithera

Awarding University: University of Nairobi, Kenya

Level : MA

Year: 2012

Holding Libraries: University of Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta Memorial Library ;

Subject Terms: Media coverage/Women/Magazines/ ;

Pages: 56

Advisors: Tom Odhiambo


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the depiction of successful womanhood in Kenyan popular magazines. Successful womanhood is a state of women experiencing breakthroughs that enable them scale up the social ladder. The main objective ofthis study was to investigate how discourses on successful womanhood were presented in women magazines. True Love and Drum magazines for the period between March 2011 and March 2012 were used forzhis purpose. Using both quantitative and qualitative methods, the study analyzed both content and discourse ofthe two magazines to determine their depiction of successful womanhood for the period under investigation. The findings of the study revealed that discourses on successful womanhood received a wide coverage in popular magazines. Results also indicated that the recurrent themes in most of the articles on successful womanhood were optimistic. A large number of articles on successful womanhood were presented in a positive language and the women featured in most of the articles were those who have excelled in their own business ventures. The principal conclusion drawn is that, for other forms of print media to succeed in attracting female readership, they need to give more coverage to women issues that should be presented with optimistic themes and a positive language tone. Moreover, there should more features on women who have excelled in their fields. This study recommended a positive coverage of women in main stream media, a sandwich approach in the presentation of negative issues around women and a shift in the pattern of language used. The study further recommended that the choice of stories to be published should be based on the value they will add on the intended audience.