Taylor Swift has been selected as Time’s Person of the Year, a development that is only somewhat less inevitable than the sun rising. It is hard to recall, or even imagine, the last time a cultural icon felt as unstoppable or unstoppable as Swift has in the last year, shattering record after record—many of them her own—en route to becoming a billionaire according to Forbes.
Ratings increased, economies expanded, and the film industry as a whole took note. The notion that people across the globe might have a common love or dislike for a particular occurrence appeared to be as outdated as dial-up internet, but as it happens, there is one exception. There is still monoculture, and it goes by the name of Taylor Swift.
Person of the Year is not an honour one is permitted to refuse, but Swift accepted it, giving the magazine her first in-depth interview in years. Person of the Year is a title, one is obliged to point out, formerly granted to such noteworthy personalities as Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin.
(Just the quotes from Travis Kelce will keep SwiftTok occupied for weeks.) Although the crowning is essentially unnecessary and more a reflection of Time’s importance and sales numbers than of Swift, it feels like a fitting conclusion to a year in which even those who were predisposed to oppose her ubiquity ultimately gave up.