10 Ideas That Changed the World in 2012

A retrospective look at the ideas that mattered in the last 12 months.

What better time than late December to pause for a retrospective look at the ideas that mattered over the past year? In this era of specialization, no one person is qualified to offer a definitive list of this kind. So think of what follows as a proposition to ponder: all that follows is either going to reshape our world, or would reshape it if only the idea in question were given its due. Take to the comments section to offer ideas that ought to appear on lists like this one.


Presented by

Conor Friedersdorf is a staff writer at The Atlantic, where he focuses on politics and national affairs. He lives in Venice, California, and is the founding editor of The Best of Journalism, a newsletter devoted to exceptional nonfiction.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A Miniature 1950s Utopia

A reclusive artist built this idealized suburb to grapple with his painful childhood memories.

Video

Why Principals Matter

Nadia Lopez didn't think anybody cared about her school. Then the Internet heard her story.

Video

A History of Contraception

In the 16th century, men used linen condoms laced shut with ribbons.

Video

'A Music That Has No End'

In Spain, a flamenco guitarist hustles to make a modest living.

More in Global

Just In