Seven Artists, Dissidents, Journalists, and Rebels Who Defied Authoritarians in 2016

2016 was a difficult year in many parts of the world for those who sought to be different under authoritarian regimes. Whether Communists, Islamists, or the religious intolerance of their own families, these individuals took a stand and, in some cases, paid the ultimate price to advocate for freedom. They are not the only ones who took a stand, but theirs are stories of resilience and commitment to freedom in a world beleaguered by threats to individual rights and liberties. Venezuela: Lilian Tintori The wife of Popular Will opposition party leader Leopoldo López has traveled the world seeking justice for her husband and Venezuela’s other political prisoners, arrested for refusing to bow to the nation’s socialist dictator Nicolás Maduro. López was sentenced to 13 years in prison in September 2015 for organizing peaceful protests against Maduro in 2014. He lost an appeal in August and has remained in isolation in the country’s notorious Ramo Verde prison for much of his detention, subject to what international human rights courts have deemed torture. Tintori, too, has been subject to degrading treatment at Ramo Verde, forced to strip naked before guards and groped by police guards. Tintori, meanwhile, has continued to help organize the protests