Hélène Gordon-Lazareff

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Hélène Gordon-Lazareff (French: [elɛn gɔʁdɔ̃ lazaʁɛf]; 21 September 1909 – 16 February 1988) was a French journalist of Russian Jewish origin who founded Elle magazine in 1945. She was married to Pierre Lazareff, founder of the newspaper France-Soir. She had two daughters, Michèle Lazareff-Rosier from her first marriage and Nina Lazareff from her second marriage with Pierre.[1]


Born in Russia, Hélène Gordon-Lazareff fled to France from the Bolshevik Revolution. She studied ethnography at the Sorbonne. She began her career as a journalist in the 1930s, writing the children's page for France-Soir under the name "Tante Juliette".[2] She later married the owner of the newspaper, Pierre Lazareff in 1938. The couple[3] left Paris for New York after the outbreak of World War II. Gordon-Lazareff was easily integrated into journalist circles in New York because of her perfect English.[2] She became an editor of the women's page of the New York Times after working for Harper's Bazaar and. She returned to Paris in 1944 a couple of weeks after the city was liberated. She decided to start her own fashion magazine and used the experience she had after having worked for several American magazines. A year later the first issue of Elle magazine was published in October "on paper so course that it reminded her of French bread".[4] After a year journalist Françoise Giroud was hired to take over as editor-in-chief of the magazine when Gordon-Lazareff became seriously ill. In Profession Journaliste Françoise Giroud describes Gordon-Lazareff as "a brilliant, young woman".[5]


  1. ^ "Family tree of Hélène GORDON". Geneanet. Retrieved 2019-07-01.
  2. ^ a b Weiner, Susan (2001-05-09). Enfants Terribles: Youth and Femininity in the Mass Media in France, 1945-1968. ISBN 9780801865398.
  3. ^ « Pierre et Hélène Lazareff, couple hors normes ! » interview Sophie Delassein by Jean-Pierre Thiollet, France-Soir, 12 May 2009, http://www.francesoir.fr/loisirs/litterature/"pierre-et-helene-lazareff-couple-hors-normes-"-sophie-delassein-38180.html
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-07-10. Retrieved 2012-05-06.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ "Magazine history: And Lazareff created French ELLE". It's OK for intellectual feminists to like fashion.