Sunday, August 26, 2007

Letters to the editor

There's a move for publications to print only excerpts of letters sent by readers or even to print excerpts from e-mails and blogs on subjects related to or commenting on a given article or feature. I like to read letters in their entirety (or at least complete and as tidied up by the editors or "edited for brevity" as some say). Here's a nice phrase: "long-ingrained dysfunctional patterns of behavior and communication in marriages that usually stem from each spouse's unresolved family-of-origin issues." It's the "family-of-origin issues" that I love. The original feature was in last week's NYT Sunday magazine, about group therapy for couples and entitled "Can This Marriage Be Saved?" The current editor-in-chief of the Ladies' Home Journal writes reminding that this is the title of a long-running series in that magazine. She says that it is the favorite of many readers and that it has been appearing monthly since 1952. It was a favorite of mine from the very beginning. It seemed so adult. It's still set up in very much the same way, including three narratives: her version, his version, and the counselor's version. I forget in what household I read this regularly, but I loved it, and I've run across many others who loved it just as much.


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