Why men prefer books written by male authors
It is an inconvenient truth that some book fans will be quick to deny.
But according to a new survey, most people in Britain prefer to read books by writers of their own gender – and tend to read fewer of those written by the opposite sex.
The research, which comes after claims of sexism in publishing, found a stark gender divide in reading habits in the 40,000 people polled.
Male authors accounted for 90 percent of men’s 50 most-read titles this year, while the reverse was true for the women’s titles.
According to Goodreads, the reading website which collated the research, female readers also rate books by female writers more highly.
On average, women rated books by women 4 out of 5 and books by men 3.8 out of 5.
A website spokesman said: ‘Ultimately, when it comes to the most popular 2014 books on Goodreads we are still sticking to our own sex.’
Goodreads was prompted to conduct its survey after the author Joanna Walsh launched a campaign to get more people reading female authors at the start of the year.
Recent statistics from the US showed a vast imbalance in the numbers of women reviewed and reviewing in today’s literary press.
Elizabeth Khuri Chandler, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Goodreads, said the aim in sharing the data ‘was to stimulate conversation and self-reflection’ and ‘to create a space for some friendly conversation about the subject’.
She added: ‘It’s been fascinating to see our members discussing the male author/female author ratio of their reading.
‘For the most part, people are saying that they don’t set out to read a male author or a female author.
‘It’s all about the book. But when they look at their lists, some of them are realising that maybe they might want to explore different authors.’
The researchers also found that men and women tend to read the same number of books but that women preferred to read more recent books than men.
Chandler added: ‘Some men said they felt they read more male authors because of the type of books they like to read.
‘They thought that more male authors tended to write in the genres or about the topics that interest them than female authors. We also noticed that most people were unaware of the gender breakdown of the book they were reading. It certainly seems like an untapped area to explore.’
（译者 490252028 编辑 丹妮）