Keep a low profile

To "keep a low profile" is to stay out of the spotlight

Today's story: Cuba after Castros
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Keep a low profile

Today’s phrase is “keep a low profile.” The new president of Cuba, Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermudez, has kept a low profile during his 30-year government career. That means, he has been out of the spotlight, or, he has not attracted much attention. You’ve probably heard the phrase “high-profile” before. Something or someone that is “high-profile” is something that gets a lot of attention. By contrast, if a person keeps a low profile, that person is not seeking out attention.

Keeping a low profile doesn’t mean having little power or influence; it just means not attracting a lot of attention. Do you remember we talked about the new president of Peru, Martín Vizcarra, a few weeks ago? He’s a former engineer and is taking over the presidency after Pablo Kuzynski was removed from office. He’s described as being low-profile, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have influence or importance.

These are examples of people who keep a low profile in general. But it’s also popular for people who are often in the public spotlight to keep a low profile for a short period of time. When I was doing the research for this episode, I saw a headline that said Donald Trump kept a low profile one day. Now, Donald Trump is nobody’s idea of a low-profile person. In fact, he’s as high-profile as they come, right? But it’s possible for someone like him to have a quiet day, without attracting much attention; on that day—and it was probably just one day—he kept a low profile.

Actors and other celebrities might keep a low profile when they’re on vacation or spending personal time with family—they don’t want people to know where they are, or that they’re celebrities.

So, remember: someone might keep a low profile in general, as part of their nature, or they might be someone that’s generally in the spotlight, but they can keep a low profile for a shorter period of time.


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Story: Cuba after Castros