Garry Kasparov makes TIME 100 list

by ChessBase
5/4/2007 – Once a year Time Magazine compiles a list of the 100 most influential people in the world. Oprah Winfrey made the list a record five times, Bill Gates four times, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela and Condoleezza Rice three times. The 2007 list which hits the newsstands today includes a chess player who today is "leading a lonely fight for greater democracy in Russia." Details.

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TIME 100 is an annual list, compiled by Time Magazine, of the 100 most influential people in the world. The list was first published in 1999 as a list of the 100 most influential people of the passing century. It soon became an annual feature, listing the 100 people influencing the world most greatly every year. They are separated into five groups: Leaders and Revolutionaries, Builders and Titans, Artists and Entertainers, Scientists and Thinkers, and Heroes and Icons. Each category has 20 nominees, sometimes in pairs or small groups. The magazine made it clear that the people recognized are those who are changing the world – for better or for worse.

Record holders for TIME 100 nominations are Oprah Winfrey, who was listed five times, followed by Bill Gates (four times), George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela and Condoleezza Rice (three times).

This year's list includes Queen Elizabeth, US presidential hopefuls Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Pope Benedict XVI, YouTube founders Steve Chen and Chad Hurley, film director Martin Scorsese, and supermodel Kate Moss. Separately, Time named 14 "power givers" including Bill and Melinda Gates, Angelina Jolie, Queen Rania al-Abdullah of Jordan, George Soros.

The list includes 71 men and 29 women from 27 countries. It does not include President Bush.

On the current TIME 100 list we find actors Leonardo DiCaprio, Sacha Baron Cohen (of "Borat" fame), as well as entertainment newsmakersBrad Pitt, Justin Timberlake, Cate Blanchett and America Ferrera. Politicians include California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Nancy Pelosi (writeup by Newt Gingrich!), Michael Bloomberg, Angela Merkel, Tzipi Livni, Sonia Gandhi and Ayatullah Ali Khamenei. Amongst the Scientists and Thinkers we find Al Gore, Neil deGrasse Tyson and Richard Dawkins. Builders and Titans include Richard Branson and Steve Jobs, while Heroes and Pioneers include (tennis star) Roger Federer, Oprah Winfrey, George Clooney and Michael J. Fox.

"The TIME 100 is not a hot list. It's a survey not of the most powerful or the most popular, but of the most influential," writes Editor Richard Stengel. "We look for people whose ideas, whose example, whose talent, whose discoveries transform the world we live in. Yes, there are Presidents and dictators who can change the world through fiat, but we're more interested in innovators like Monty Jones, the Sierra Leone scientist who has developed a strain of rice that can save African agriculture. Or heroes like the great chess master Garry Kasparov, who is leading a lonely fight for greater democracy in Russia." Here's his writeup:

Garry Kasparov

By Michael Elliott

Garry Kasparov likes to say he has been in politics all his life. In the Soviet Union, the nation in which he grew up, chess was a way of demonstrating the superiority of communism over the decadent West, and a chess prodigy was inevitably a political figure. Kasparov never dodged that fate; when he took on and eventually defeated Anatoly Karpov, the darling of the Soviet chess establishment, in 1985, his image as a prominent outsider – Kasparov is half Jewish, half Armenian – was fixed.

Kasparov's status has been maintained in post-Soviet Russia. His organization, the Other Russia, a coalition of those opposed to the rule of President Vladimir Putin, has held a series of demonstrations, often broken up by the police. For Kasparov, Russia today, dominated by a combination of huge energy enterprises and former security apparatchiks (such as Putin), is a betrayal of those who dreamed of democracy in the early 1990s.

Putin's foes are fragmented and run from old-fashioned nationalists to modern liberals; Kasparov, 44, insists he is just a moderator, not a leader, of the movement. But by giving a voice to those who believe that Russia can develop in a way different from the authoritarianism that seems always to have been its fate, the retired grand master shows that he has not yet made his last move.


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