`magazine’ and `journal’

When first used, the word `journal’ referred to a daily publication which gave an account of the events that happened the previous day. It was like a newspaper. Nowadays, the word is used to refer to any publication that is brought out at regular intervals. For example, a journal can be a monthly, quarterly, etc. The articles contained in a journal are usually scholarly, serious in nature, and deal with a specialised area. For example, we have the Journal of Linguistics, Journal of Writing, etc. A `magazine’, on the other hand, doesn’t limit itself to one area; it deals with various subjects — politics, entertainment and sports. Since the articles are meant for the general public, they are much shorter and are usually accompanied by photographs. `Outlook’, `Frontline’, and `Sportstar’, are all magazines, not journals; and like the journal, they too are brought out at regular intervals.

Source: ‘Know Your English’ (The Hindu) –November 13, 2006.

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