Jennifer Lawrence may be on the cover of Vogue, but transgender rights advocate Chelsea Manning is rocking her own story and swimsuit photo in the issue.
In a tweet Thursday, Manning shared the lead image of her magazine feature, “Chelsea Manning Changed the Course of History. Now Shes Focusing on Herself.”
Her thoughts on how the photo shoot turned out were made clear in the caption: “Guess this is what freedom looks like.”
This isn’t the first time Manning has shared a photo of herself as a free woman. Back in May she released a portrait of herself on Instagram shortly after she was released from military prison. She served seven years for leaking U.S. military documents to WikiLeaks before her 35-year sentence was commuted.
But this is the first time the trans woman and former military intelligence expert has made it into a huge fashion magazine. In the article she talks about her freedom, whether it’s to express her femininity or just walk around unrecognized. “Its not like Im living in fear or anything, she said to the magazine. Im so glad to be out and about and walking around.
She touched on her transition and life out of prison as Chelsea. It feels natural. It feels like its how its supposed to be, instead of this anxiety, this uncertainty, this ball of self-consciousness that comes with pretending to be male, she said. It didnt feel right. I didnt know what it was. I couldnt describe it. Now thats gone.