New Yorker Fiction, by the Numbers

The NY Times has a story about a student at Princeton, Katherine L. Milkman, who used her senior thesis to analyze the selection of short fiction published in the New Yorker. I am absoultely shocked at her findings below.

Ms. Milkman, who has a minor in American studies, read 442 stories printed in The New Yorker from Oct. 5, 1992, to Sept. 17, 2001, and built a substantial database. She then constructed a series of rococo mathematical tests to discern, among other things, whether certain fiction editors at the magazine had a specific impact on the type of fiction that was published, the sex of authors and the race of characters. The study was long on statistics and short on epiphanies: one main conclusion was that male editors generally publish male authors who write about male characters who are supported by female characters.