This article was originally published in The Progressive's June, 1999 edition. To get more great content like this, subscribe today for as little as $10 a year and get a free 2014 calendar as a gift.
Fifty years after migrating from provincial South Africa to London to become a novelist, Doris Lessing is still writing on a manual typewriter—though not, of course, on the same machine she used for her first novel, The Grass Is Singing (Crowell, 1950).
An old friend who long ago gave up on the Democratic Party in favor of politics on the left fringe greatly enjoys bashing prominent liberals. He finds that the opportunism , the compromises, and the double - standards of leading liberal Democrats provide easy targets. Yet of former South Dakota Senator and 1972 Presidential nominee George McGovern , my friend once opined, "If all liberals were like McGovern , I'd still be a liberal ."
Gene Sharp is the single most influential proponent of nonviolent change in our time. His work has served as a how-to manual for activists in countries across Eastern Europe, Asia, and Africa, and has been translated into dozens of languages. And it played a role in the Arab Spring, as anti-Mubarak protesters in Egypt, particularly, found inspiration in his teachings.
2011 Nobel Peace Prize winner Leymah Gbowee has overcome tremendous adversity. A teenager at the start of the civil war in her native Liberia, she and her family were forced to go on the run, first within the country and then to Ghana. Along the way, she witnessed terrible atrocities and narrowly escaped harm herself. During the birth of her third child, she