The February issue of Harper's Bazaar has sparked backlash with an ambiguous headline and main cover story link.
Saoirse Ronan is the latest in a string of Irish celebrities who has been claimed by another nation, notably Great Britain.
The 24-year-old graces the cover of the February edition of Harper's Bazaar UK, which includes an interview with Ronan celebrating her lead role in Mary Queen of Scots. Underneath the striking image of the award-winning actress, the words 'The Spirit of Great Britain' can be read.
Saoirse Ronan for Harper's Bazaar Magazine, February 2019. pic.twitter.com/krpPp6plJQ— (@quotingfiIms) January 3, 2019
The cover was met with immediate disdain online.
What an insult to Ireland. But of course, that’s what the English do.— GreyWater Reed (@MearaReed) January 3, 2019
So Harper’s Bazaar have the wonderful Saoirse Ronan on their cover, with the headline “The spirit of Great Britain" to accompany it. Nothing factually wrong. But certainly not the best idea. Just going to put this under ‘things that were not meant in 2019, but did anyway’..... pic.twitter.com/h6JQQJXZP6— Dr. Jennifer Cassidy (@OxfordDiplomat) January 3, 2019
The magazine has not yet hit shelves – but in the online interview with Ronan, she discusses her role, British monarchs, Irish borders - and whether history will repeat itself in the age of Brexit.
Ronan – who holds both Irish and American citizenship but calls Ireland 'home' – is at the centre of the controversy surrounding the cover, as the ambiguity of the cover's image and main story headlines have not gone unnoticed.
It is standard editorial practice in publishing that the main cover image and main cover line are somewhat linked.
While the magazine does seem to separate the two - both Ronan's interview and 'The Spirit of Great Britain' tag - a number of people online are questioning the placement.
Uh, guys? You know Saoirse Ronan isn’t British, right? pic.twitter.com/xcKp8SNp84— Guy Lodge (@GuyLodge) January 3, 2019
Harper's Bazaar has yet to comment on the cover, leaving the ambiguity to be decided by the reader.
In other news, it was revealed on Thursday morning that Ronan will be among the presenters at the 2019 Golden Globes.
The ceremony – which will take place on 6 January and will be hosted by Sandra Oh and Andy Samberg from the Beverly Hills Hotel – will feature a number of famous faces presenting awards, including Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman and The Shape Of Water actress Octavia Spencer.