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(Spare Rib cover, December 1972)
|Editor||Collective from late 1973|
Spare Rib was a second-wave feminist magazine in the United Kingdom that emerged from the counter culture of the late 1960s as a consequence of meetings involving, amongst others, Rosie Boycott and Marsha Rowe.
Its first edition was published in June 1972 and some newsagents, including W H Smith, refused to stock it at the time. It sold around 20,000 copies per month but was circulated more widely through women's groups and networks.
Its purpose, as described in its editorial, was to investigate and present alternatives to the traditional gender roles for women of virgin, wife or mother.
Early articles were linked closely with left-leaning political theories of the time, especially anti-capitalism and the exploitation of women as consumers through fashion.
As the women's movement evolved during the 1970s the magazine became a focus for sometimes acrimonious debate between the many streams which emerged within the movement, such as socialist feminism, radical feminism, revolutionary feminism, lesbian feminism, liberal feminism and black feminism.
It ceased publication in 1993.
It was announced by the Guardian in April 2013 that the magazine was due to be relaunched, with the journalist Charlotte Raven at the helm. It has subsequently been announced that while a magazine and website are to be launched, it will not now be known as Spare Rib.
Spare Rib became a collective by the end of 1973 (see Spare Rib Reader, edited by Marsha Rowe, and Rosie Boycott, A Nice Girl Like Me).
An extensive collection of most if not all publications can be found in the Women's Library reference/reading room in London.
- Feminist Publications Brief history of Spare Rib at Bristol University History Department. Accessed June 2008
- Interview with Marsha Rowe The first editor of feminist magazine Spare Rib interviewed by Claire Daly at The F-Word. 31 January 2008. Accessed June 2008.
- Feminists and Flourbombs - Passion, bitterness and feminism by Sue O'Sullivan, collective member of Spare Rib magazine from 1979 to 1984. Accessed June 2008.
- Article on Spare Rib by Hazel K. Bell from The National Housewives Register's Newsletter no. 19, Autumn 1975, pages10-11. Accessed June 2008.
- Women and Journalism By Deborah Chambers, Linda Steiner, Carole Fleming. P. 166 (2004). Routledge. ISBN 0-415-27444-3
- Alison Fell (ed.), Hard Feelings: Fiction and Poetry from Spare Rib, Women's Press (1980).
- Marsha Rowe (ed.), Spare Rib Reader, Penguin Books (1982), ISBN 0-14-005250-X
- Rosie Boycott, A Nice Girl Like Me, Chatto & Windus (1984, 2009), ISBN 978-1-84739-470-5
- Sue O'Sullivan (ed.), Women's Health: A Spare Rib Reader, Pandora (1987), ISBN 0-86358-218-4
- Photo of Marsha Rowe and Rosie Boycott Founders of 'Spare Rib', at the magazine's offices, 19 June 1972.
- Spare Rib Magazine (1972-1993) - article on grassrootsfeminism.net website