Time, with its nearly thirty million readers, is the most popular weekly news magazine in the world, and the second most popular one in the US and many Italians conquered its prestigious front cover. Each of them contributing, as a piece of a puzzle, to create, through the voice of one of the most authoritative magazine in the world, the popular representation of their country, and their culture, that Americans have in their minds’ eye.
In 1923, the year of its foundation Time devoted a cover to one of the most illustrious Italian personalities of the time: actress Eleonora Duse, identified as the greatest Italian actress of the Belle Époque and symbol of the modern theater. After her, in the same year, it was the turn of Giulio Gatti Casazza – theater producer, who moved to the United States at the beginning of the last century and became the longest-serving director of the New York Metropolitan – and Benito Mussolini to whom the US magazine devoted no less than eight covers. While in 1926 the front cover depicted composer Pietro Mascagni and conductor Arturo Toscanini.
Among the Italian celebrities that have been portrayed on the Time’s cover there are sportsmen – like boxer Primo Carnera and footballer Mario Balotelli -, politicians – like Dino Grandi and Mario Monti –, entrepreneurs – like Giuseppe Maria Bellanca, founder of Bellanca Aircraft Company-, talented actresses – like Gina Lollobrigida and Sophia Loren -, representatives of the Italian fashion – like Giorgio Armani and Gianni Versace -, and personalities such us Maria Montessori, Edda Ciano and John XXIII who, in 1962, was the only Italian to be awarded with the Time title of Man of the Year.
Ilona Catani Scarlett