There's A Hidden Message In Time's 'Person Of The Year' Cover And It Is SO Important

7 December 2017, 15:47

TIme Magazine full cover
Picture: Time Magazine
Nicky Idika

By Nicky Idika

Some people thought it was a mistake but this subtle artistic choice was 100% intentional.

Time Magazine announced its annual 'Person of The Year' and you probably weren't surprised to find out that it was The Silence Breakers who received this year's honour.

Silence Breakers refers to the many women and men who bravely came forward to tell the truth about our culture's sexual harassment epidemic.

Time, of course, took a stunning cover photo for their story. But, there was something deeply moving in the image that you may not have noticed at first.

In the bottom right hand corner of the photo is an elbow with an unknown owner.

People have taken this symbolic elbow to mean two things. One, that the elbow represents the unnamed individuals who came forward to Time with their stories but chose to remain anonymous for fear of reprisal.

Two, the elbow represents people that have not yet come forward and the people reading who have their own #MeToo experiences.

Time's Charlotte Alter went on AM to DM to explain how the elbow was a conscious decision by the publication to reference the risks associated with publicly naming your abuser.

This acknowledgment is SO important because there are many unknown people with #MeToo stories who are not yet able to come forward with their real names and faces. Their experiences and voices, however, are very much essential to this movement and this moment.

Time's inclusion of this symbolic elbow has clearly moved people.

We applaud the women who came forward with their stories, but we also need to acknowledge that there is inherent privilege in being able to do so.

Many women cannot afford the financial, psychological, or emotional toll that comes along with telling their stories. Their anonymous #MeToo experiences need to be acknowledged, as well, and Time's tribute to those women is so incredibly important.