Tuesday, April 12, 2011

All Kennedys, all the time; The New Republic parses Vanity Fair's obsession

The New Republic rather acidly reports in the current issue that Vanity Fair  magazine is so obsessed with the Kennedys that about one-third of the issues since 2003 have had at least one article about a Kennedy, written by a Kennedy or mentioning a Kennedy at least seven times.
Eliza Gray, a reporter-researcher with TNR points out that Vanity Fair did an April Fool's satire of its preoccupation with a story making a dubious genealogical link with the soon-to-be British princess Kate Middleton and the Kennedy family. But that it publishes stories every bit as ridiculous in an effort to keep the flame of Camelot alive.
I had an instinct it ran deep, but rarely has an investigation—inspired by a hunch—proved so satisfying....
In the past seven months, the magazine has published four additional articles related to the Kennedys. November’s “Marilyn and her Monsters” included a diary passage describing JFK and his brother-in-law. The January issue excerpted a passage from Greg Lawrence’s recent book Jackie as Editor. The February issue dedicated more than 6,000 words to Kennedy’s inauguration, uncovering groundbreaking material like: JFK felt fat, he had a “dark tan” attained in Florida, and ate “broiled bacon” for breakfast. The May issue includes an Annie Leibovitz portrait of the Shriver family, with a lengthy caption listing the subjects’ accomplishments. Vanity Fair, as even an occasional reader could tell you, has got a thing for the Kennedys.
Gray points out that Jackie has been mentioned more than the current first lady, Michelle Obama, and twice as many mentions as Sarah Palin.



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