Alice Schwarzer Forty Years Fighting for Feminism

“Emma”, Germany's most prominent feminist magazine published by women's rights activist Alice Schwarzer, marked its 40th anniversary this week.
Women’s rights doyenne Alice Schwarzer has reasons to feel jubilant.

Germany’s most famous feminist magazine, “Emma”, has turned 40. Founder Alice Schwarzer, 74, has been the bi-monthly’s publisher and editor-in-chief from day one, and she doesn't intend to give it up any time soon.

“‘Emma’ has always been my top priority,” Ms. Schwarzer told German press agency DPA. “I don’t want to leave it.”

The first issue of “Emma” was published in Cologne in January 1977. The magazine's name is a play on “emancipation.”

The magazine still turns a profit, with a relatively stable print run of 50,000, of which 24,000 are subscriptions.

The magazine has been criticized from some quarters in the past for its rather opinionated stance. Yet there's no doubt “Emma” has had an impact German society, raising awareness of social and women’s issues.

Ms. Schwarzer, who spearheaded the fight for legalization of abortion in Germany in the 1970s, is no stranger to controversy. The conservative-leaning daily Die Welt once billed her a "man-hater." In July last year she was fined a six-figure sum for a €4-million tax fraud.

“‘Emma is the world’s last feminist magazine sold at the newsstand,” Ms. Schwarzer said. “I never thought I’d do it for 40 years. I just went from one issue to the next through the whole of 40 years.”