What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more
Close

Pearl Square: the New Tahrir Square?

February 21, 2011, 12:00 AM
Pearl_square

Pearl Square in Bahrain's capital Manama is the setting for the latest round of clashes between autocratic Arab leaders and protestors emboldened by other successful Arab revolts. But unlike the revolts in Egypt and Tunisia, which were largely secular, the tenor of the debate in Bahrain is religious: the majority Shia have complained of discrimination by the ruling Sunni minority.

The following Al Jazeera English video from May 2009 excellently frames the issues at play in Bahrain, issues that have been simmering for decades:

The stakes of this intensified unrest are high for the U.S., since Bahrain has proved a strategic military ally and oil supplier. But the Obama administration does not want to be seen as being on the wrong side of history, something for which historian Niall Ferguson attacked the President last week. Former CIA analyst Bruce Reidel told The Daily Beast that the situation in Bahrain will require a careful dance by the President:

"The challenge facing Obama and his team is to balance our commitments to democracy with our commitments to allies who control the world's oil reserves. Change needs to come to Bahrain. The prime minister, who is notoriously corrupt and a virtual racist when it comes to the Shia, needs to go after 40 years in power. The king and crown prince need to live up to their promises to open up the political process. But it won't be easy. Revolutions are not a tea party and dialogue is difficult when martyrs have died."

More Resources:

—New York Times: "Opposition Demands Dissolution of Bahraini Government," Feb 20

—As I Please: "Is Saudia Arabia Intervening in Bahrain," Feb 19

 

Pearl Square: the New Tahri...

Newsletter: Share: