New York’s Latest Cover: The Political Power of Single Women

New York Magazine’s February 22–March 6, 2016, issue cover story on why single women are now the most potent political force in America is an excerpt from Rebecca Traister’s forthcoming book, All the Single Ladies (Simon & Schuster). “Across classes, and races, we are seeing a wholesale revision of what female life might entail,” Traister writes. “It is, by many measures, the invention of independent female adulthood, and has created an entirely new population: adult women who are no longer economically, socially, sexually, or reproductively dependent on or defined by the men they marry.”

Rebecca Traister’s All the Single Ladies is out March 1, 2016.

Of the cover image, photography director Jody Quon says she thought to go right to the ring finger and “flip a finger, but flip the ring finger without the ring.” The day the cover photo was taken, the photo department happened to be shooting another story and thus had a plethora of models on set. “This one model did it beautifully,” says Quon. “She had long, gorgeous fingers. Beautiful nails and nail beds.” The photo department also cast fingers from around the office (including the fingers of your esteemed publicist) for a potential spread inside the magazine. “The crazy thing is that very few people have photogenic hands,” says Quon. “When you start to just look at the fingers — when you start to analyze them — they look awful, frankly.”

Once the hand model was cast, the next question was, to polish or not to polish? “We ended up doing a combo. The polish on the ring finger and the clear polish on the thumb so that the focus went right to the ring finger,” Quon says. “And then [art director] Tom [Alberty] put the headline right where the ring goes.” Chimes Alberty, “Get it?”

The Political Power of Single Women