The year of the Swift
Taylor Swift was today crowned as TIME magazine’s Person of the Year for 2023, beating tough competition from fellow nominees King Charles III, Sam Altman, Hollywood strikers, and Barbie.
The award, which was given to Volodymyr Zelensky and the "Spirit of Ukraine" in 2022, caps a staggering era for the 33-year-old songstress, who has grown to become the biggest popstar on Earth, broken a multitude of music and movie records, and even been credited with boosting the US economy.
A tale as old as TIME
TIME’s debut issue was published over a century ago in March 1923, when it became the world’s first weekly news magazine. However, the publication didn’t give out its first Man of the Year award — the accolade’s default title before 1999 — until 4 years later when it recognized the efforts of Charles Lindbergh, the man who made the first nonstop solo transatlantic flight.
According to ex-TIME editor and recent Musk biographer Walter Isaacson, the award goes to the “person or persons who most affected the news and our lives, for good or ill” in the given year — for much of history, it seems that’s meant men. Indeed, of the 84 awards handed out to individual people — rather than concepts like “The Inheritor” in 1966, or mass groups like “The Whistleblowers” in 2002 — only a fraction have been awarded to women, with Taylor Swift becoming the 8th to pick up the TIME gong.