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Greta Thunberg named Person of the Year 2019 by TIME Magazine
“Greta is an image of all of this generation.”
The Swedish climate activist reaches the top of the American magazine’s annual list. Editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal on why Greta Thunberg is the Person of the Year:
It began with a story line familiar to every parent of every generation in every corner of the globe: an indignant teenager and a sudden burst of rebellion. It became one of the most unlikely and surely one of the swiftest ascents to global influence in history. Over the course of little more than a year, a 16-year-old from Stockholm went from a solitary protest on the cobblestones outside her country’s Parliament to leading a worldwide youth movement; from a schoolkid conjugating verbs in French class to meeting with the Secretary-General of the United Nations and receiving audiences with Presidents and the Pope; from a solo demonstrator with a hand-painted slogan (Skolstrejk för Klimatet) to inspiring millions of people across more than 150 countries to take to the streets on behalf of the planet we share.
Meaningful change rarely happens without the galvanizing force of influential individuals, and in 2019, the earth’s existential crisis found one in Greta Thunberg. Marshaling “Fridays for Future” protests throughout Europe; thundering, “How dare you!” at the world’s most powerful leaders in her viral U.N. speech; leading some 7 million climate strikers across the world in September and tens of thousands more in Madrid in early December, Thunberg has become the biggest voice on the biggest issue facing the planet—and the avatar of a broader generational shift in our culture that is playing out everywhere from the campuses of Hong Kong to the halls of Congress in Washington.
As Isabella Prata, the mother of two climate strikers in São Paulo, puts it, “Greta is an image of all of this generation.”Greta ThunbergTIME MagazinePerson of the Year 2019Evgenia ArbugaevaEdward Felsenthal