The New Yorker Vs The Atlantic

The New Yorker Vs The Atlantic: A Battle of Literary Giants

For decades, The New Yorker and The Atlantic have been two of the most revered literary magazines in the world. Their contributions to literature, journalism, poetry, and fiction have defined the American literary landscape. Both publications have a rich history of writers such as Ernest Hemingway, Joan Didion, and Norman Mailer, to name a few. Both The New Yorker and The Atlantic have their legion of readers and fans, and both offer distinctive perspectives on their coverage areas. In this article, we’ll discuss the differences between The New Yorker and The Atlantic, their offerings, their target audience, and why they are still relevant today.

The New Yorker

Founded in 1925 by Harold Ross and his wife, The New Yorker has been a staple of American culture. It is a weekly magazine that covers a wide range of topics, including politics, culture, fashion, food, and entertainment, among others. It is famous for its cartoons, fiction, and long-form journalism. Known for its rigorous fact-checking and research, The New Yorker is considered the gold standard of journalism. The magazine has won numerous Pulitzer Prizes for its investigative reporting, criticism, fiction, and poetry.

The New Yorker’s target audience is the educated, urban, upper-middle-class. Its readers are primarily from the East Coast and consume the magazine in print and digital formats. Its readership skews older, with an average age of 49. The articles in The New Yorker are written with a level of detail and sophistication that appeals to its readership. The magazine has a reputation for having a liberal, progressive political stance.

The Atlantic

Founded in 1857 by a group of writers, The Atlantic is the oldest continuously published magazine in America still running. Its initial focus was on abolition and the abolitionist movement but quickly evolved into covering a wide range of topics. Today, the magazine covers politics, culture, technology, and global affairs. It is famous for its features and long-form journalism. Although The Atlantic is not as well-known for its fiction as The New Yorker, it has published the works of several famous writers, including Mark Twain, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Henry James.

The Atlantic’s target audience is more diverse than The New Yorker’s, and the magazine has a younger readership, with an average age of 38. Its readership spans throughout the country and consumes the publication equally in print and digital formats. The Atlantic’s articles are written in a more accessible way than The New Yorker, with a focus on important issues and events. The magazine has a reputation for having a moderate political stance.

Difference and Similarities

One of the key differences between The New Yorker and The Atlantic is the writing style. The New Yorker’s articles are known for being lengthy and written with an elevated level of prose, while The Atlantic’s articles are more concise and accessible. The audience of both publications reflects this as The New Yorker’s tends to be older, more affluent, and more educated, while The Atlantic’s audience is more widely dispersed throughout the country.

Another significant difference is the diversity of coverage. The Atlantic covers a more diverse range of topics, including culture, lifestyle, and technology, while The New Yorker focuses more on arts, culture, and politics. Additionally, The New Yorker is known for its cartoons and fiction, which are not features of The Atlantic.

Lastly, both publications have distinctive editorial voices. The New Yorker often takes an unpopular stance on an issue, while The Atlantic takes a moderate stance. The New Yorker’s editorial voice is considered more intellectual, while The Atlantic’s perspective is often more conversational.


The New Yorker and The Atlantic are two magazines with a rich literary history and contributions to American culture. Both publications have demonstrated their ability to adapt and stay relevant in a constantly evolving publishing landscape. They are unique in their respective styles and target audience but continue to provide their readers with a high-quality reading experience.

For writers, the choice between the two publications depends on their style, genre, and target audience. The New Yorker is the go-to publication for long-form journalism, fiction, and arts and culture coverage. The Atlantic provides a platform for writers who want to offer fresh perspectives on politics, culture, and global issues.

In conclusion, The New Yorker and The Atlantic are literary giants that have shaped American culture for over a century. With distinct styles and target audiences, these magazines continue to be relevant and provide a platform for writers to share their work. Both publications are rich in history, have a tradition of excellence, and offer readers an enriching experience. Whether you’re a writer or reader, The New Yorker and The Atlantic are must-reads that capture the essence of American culture.