Katharine Elizabeth Whitehorn CBE (born 1928) is a British journalist, writer, and columnist who is known for her wit and humour and as a keen observer of the changing role of women.
This article needs to be updated.(April 2016)
She was a sub-editor for a women's magazine in 1956, when Picture Post photographer Bert Hardy asked her to model for him. She caught a big break, then, when he photographed her for a story on loneliness in London, and one Hardy photo of her sitting by a fire with a cigarette, as if thinking to write an article instead of being lonely, became an advertisement for the energy drink Lucozade. She wrote for Picture Post just before it closed and then worked as a columnist for The Observer in London from 1960 until 1996. As of January 2013, her weekly column continues to appear in The Observer magazine. A 1963 article on sluts, in the sense of 'slovenly women', and identifying herself with the term, created a minor sensation:
Have you ever taken anything out of the dirty-clothes basket because it had become, relatively, the cleaner thing? Changed stockings in a taxi? Could you try on clothes in any shop, any time, without worrying about your underclothes? How many things are in the wrong room—cups in the study, boots in the kitchen?
In 2009, she began presenting the short philosophical Friday evening programme on Radio 4 entitled A Point of View.
- Her book Cooking in a Bedsitter (originally Kitchen in the corner: A complete guide to bedsitter cookery), first published in 1961 and a classic of its kind, remained in print for thirty-five years.
- Roundabout (articles reprinted from “The Spectator”) [London : Methuen & Co., 1962]
- Only on Sundays [London : Methuen, 1966]
- Observations [London : Methuen, 1970]
- Sunday Best [London : Eyre Methuen, 1976]
- View from a Column [London : Eyre Methuen, 1981]
- Selective Memory by Katharine Whitehorn, 2007, published by Little Brown
- Aimee Shalan "Selective Memory: An Autobiography", The Guardian, 7 August 2008
- quoted in "Columnists: How to Succeed as a Slut", TIME, 24 January 1964
- National Life Stories, 'Whitehorn, Katharine (1 of 7) National Life Stories Collection: 'Oral History of the British Press', The British Library Board, 2009. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
- "No. 60728". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2013. p. 9.
- Toynbee, Polly (29 May 2018). "The writer Katharine Whitehorn would rather die than live like this". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 May 2018.
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- An article in which Whitehorn outlines her economic philosophy
- Appearing on Desert Island Discs
- Woman's Hour October 2007
- Women on Top in March 2009 (includes article archive)
- Katharine Whitehorn tells her life story at Web of Stories (video)
- Katharine Whitehorn on her admiration for Mary Stott, BBC Radio 4 Great Lives – listen online: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00xpp68
| Rector of the University of St Andrews