Cuban blogger Yoani Sánchez ranked among top 'Global Thinkers'
After being honored by Foreign Policy magazine, Yoani Sánchez tweeted
that she's just "thinking of how to make the race last until the end of
By Juan O. Tamayo
Cuban blogger Yoani Sánchez has been named by the Washington-based
Foreign Policy magazine as one of its "Top 100 Global Thinkers" for her
posts on life on the island, "from Raúl Castro's latest pronouncements
to the taste of mangoes."
With her usual sharp wit, Sánchez sent a tweet Tuesday saying,
"Beautiful paradoxes of life. My name on FP list of 100 thinkers, and
now I am 'thinking' of how to make the rice last until the end of the
In another tweet moments later, she noted that a government-sponsored
seminar on "Alternative Media and Social Networks" had just started in
Havana. "No alternative blogger has been invited. :-) ."
Sánchez ranked No. 81 on the list, described as "a unique portrait of
2011's global marketplace of ideas and the thinkers who make them,"
published in the December issue of Foreign Policy, part of the
Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive, LLC, in Washington.
Also on the list were 14 figures of the "Arab Spring," President Barack
Obama, Chinese artist Ai WeiWei and Bill and Melinda Gates. The only
other Latin Americans on the list were Brazil President Dilma Rousseff
and Venezuelan newspaper editor Teodoro Petkoff.
The 36-year-old philologist has won a string of mayor international
prizes since she launched her blog, Generación Y, in 2007.
"Sánchez's rise owes at least as much to her literary gifts as to the
power of Web 2.0.," Foreign Policy noted. "Approaching her country's
ills with both hopefulness and a gimlet eye, where most Cuba
commentators are didactic and ideologically entrenched, her posts — on
everything from Raúl Castro's latest pronouncements to the taste of
mangoes -- have over the years painted an unusually vivid portrait of a
society in limbo."
Her blog "stands as a rebuke to a government that still sharply limits
its citizens' access to the Internet," the report noted, adding a quote
from one of her posts in February: "We have taken back what belongs to
us … These virtual places are ours, and they will have to learn to live
with what they can no longer deny."
The Foreign Policy report gave its top 14 spots to pro-democracy
activists in the Arab world, from Wael Ghonim, a Google executive who
helped launch the revolt against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, to
Nobel Peace Prize winner Tawakkol Karman of Yemen.
Foreign Policy also named Sánchez as one of the "10 Most Influential
Latin American Intellectuals" of 2008, the same year that Time magazine
put her on its list of "100 Most Influential People in the World."