- By FP Staff
A year ago, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Mohamed ElBaradei — ranked 20th on Foreign Policy’s 2010 Global Thinkers list – said of Hosni Mubarak’s regime, “I see a decaying temple, almost collapsing. It will fall sooner rather than later.” What a prediction. This year, we’ve devoted the top spot on our 2011 Global Thinkers list to 14 brave individuals who are helping to bring democracy to the Middle East, from Wael Ghonim, the Google marketing executive who helped launch Egypt’s revolution, to Yemen’s new Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Tawakkol Karman. The spirit of popular revolution goes beyond those 14 in the top spot, from the ambassadors whose WikiLeaked cables helped send activists into the streets to the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, who continues to stand up for free expression in the face of state oppression. But we didn’t stop at just listing the world’s top thinkers and their big ideas; we took a look at what they’re reading, and, once again, surveyed this group of intellectual heavyweights for their views on everything from China’s rise to the next revolution (#OccupyUSA?). Don’t agree with them? Take the survey yourself.
Cara Parks is deputy managing editor at Foreign Policy. Prior to that she was the World editor at the Huffington Post. She is a graduate of Bard College and the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, and has written for The New Republic, Interview, Radar, and Publishers Weekly, among others.| Special Report |