When it comes to career objectives, they don’t get much more specific than Virginia Postrel’s.
While still in college, Postrel set her sites on becoming the editor of Reason Magazine, the current affairs monthly with a libertarian point of view.
She fulfilled that dream in 1989, following stints at the Wall Street Journal and Inc. magazine.
“It was fate,” said Postrel, 37, “It was really what I wanted to do most to work at a political current affairs magazine that most matched my political outlook.”
Under Postrel’s direction, the magazine has increased its circulation from 30,000 to 55,000 and has twice been a finalist for a National Magazine Award, the industry’s highest honor.
Postrel said she became interested in think magazines while studying English at Princeton and found that Reason most matched her own political outlook.
After graduating from Princeton, Postrel began her career as a business reporter for the Wall Street Journal. She later moved to Boston to write for Inc.
When her husband got a job at UCLA, Postrel headed to the West Coast. She was hired as an associate editor in 1987, becoming editor two years later.
Postrel has now set her sights on a new goal finishing her book “The Future and Its Enemies,” a book she describes as an analysis of the “changing political and intellectual alliances in the post-Cold War a time in which our traditional notions of left and right have broken down.”
Postrel refuses to politically pigeonhole herself she calls herself a “political independent,” although that’s with a small “i.” Says Postrel: “I am a libertarian and have voted for libertarian candidates.”
Writing on the evolving shape of politics, Postrel wrote, “If you want to understand the contours of today’s political-intellectual landscape, knowing your left from your right isn’t as helpful as it used to be. The end of the cold war has allowed the familiar plates to shift, creating new ideological continents and causing political upheavals.”
Postrel also makes her views known as a columnist for “Forbes ASAP,” a bimonthly technology magazine, and as a frequent guest on television shows ranging from ABC’s “Politically Incorrect” to “CNN & Co.”
Lisa Steen Proctor