Male Human Rights Activists

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite Male Human Rights Activists

 1 Malcolm X

Malcolm X.
4
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: May 19, 1925
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Omaha, Nebraska, United States
Died: February 21, 1965

An African-American leader of the civil rights movement, Malcolm X was a vocal spokesman of the Nation of Islam and called upon the blacks to protect themselves from the white, even if it meant adopting violence. His radical views and preaching later evolved and he accepted the possibility of peaceful resolution of racial issues in America.

 2 Victor Hugo

Victor Hugo.
4
Famous As: Novelist & Poet
Birthdate: February 26, 1802
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Besançon, France
Died: May 22, 1885

Victor Hugo was a French poet, dramatist, and novelist of the Romantic movement. Regarded as one of the best-known and greatest French writers of all time, Victor Hugo wrote abundantly during his career that spanned over six decades. Thanks to his works, such as Hernani and Cromwell, Victor Hugo was one of the leading figures of the Romantic literary movement.

 3 Michael Bolton

Michael Bolton.
6
Famous As: Singer, Songwriter
Birthdate: February 26, 1953
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New Haven, Connecticut, United States

Michael Bolton is an American singer-songwriter who has sold over 75 million records so far. Apart from recording several top 10 albums on the Billboard charts, Bolton also has several prestigious awards under his belt, such as Grammy Awards. Also known for his charity work, Bolton set up the Michael Bolton Foundation in order to aid children and women.

 4 Zack de la Rocha

Zack de la Rocha.
6
Birthdate: January 12, 1970
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Long Beach

Rapper Zack de la Rocha, the vocalist for the rock band Rage Against the Machine, also formed the duo One Day as a Lion with drummer Jon Theodore. He supports vegetarianism and the Zapatista (EZLN) movement of Mexico. He also testified against the U.S.’s treatment of Abu-Jamal, at the U.N. 

 5 Solomon Northup

Solomon Northup.
4
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: July 10, 1807
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Minerva, New York
Died: 1863 AD
Abolitionist Solomon Northup had authored the memoir Twelve Years a Slave, which was later adapted into the Academy Award-winning film 12 Years a Slave. Northup was abducted and sold as a slave to a planter in Louisiana. He was eventually freed with the help of the governor New York.

 6 Mike Farrell

Mike Farrell.
6
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: February 6, 1939
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Saint Paul, Minnesota

Mike Farrell is an American actor known for playing, Captain B.J. Hunnicutt, in the popular war comedy-drama TV series, M*A*S*H. Farrell's journey from being born into a working-class family to becoming a famous Hollywood actor is quite inspiring. Also a political and social activist, Farrell has worked on several activist campaigns. In 2001, he was honored with PETA's Humanitarian Award.

 7 Martin Luther King III

Martin Luther King III.
4
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: October 23, 1957
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Montgomery, Alabama
The American civil rights activist has continued his legendary father Martin Luther King Jr.’s struggle for racial equality. Martin Luther King III headed the Southern Christian Leadership Conference founded by his father and endorsed Barack Obama’s nomination for American presidency. King fought against police brutality, but he also denounced capital punishment, saying he did not belive in retributional justice.
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 8 Ai Weiwei

Ai Weiwei.
6
Famous As: Artist
Birthdate: August 28, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Beijing
Named Art Review’s most powerful artist in 2011, Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has become a symbol of resilience against the authoritarian Chinese government. Jailed and banned from leaving the country once, he is known for using various media, such as sculpture, photos, and documentaries, to reflect Chinese human-rights abuses.

 9 Liu Xiaobo

Liu Xiaobo.
4
Famous As: Chinese Human Rights Activist
Birthdate: December 28, 1955
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Changchun, China

Liu Xiaobo was a Chinese activist, literary critic, and philosopher. He is best remembered for organizing campaigns that aimed at ending the one-party rule in China. He was honored with the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize for his struggle for human rights in China. Liu is the first Chinese citizen to be honored with a Nobel Prize while residing in China.

 10 Jello Biafra

Jello Biafra
6
Famous As: Singer, Actor, Human rights activist, Politician, Journalist
Birthdate: June 17, 1958
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Boulder

 11 Andrew Young Jr.

Andrew Young Jr.
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: March 12, 1932
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

 12 Ed Roberts

Ed Roberts
3
Famous As: American disability rights activist
Birthdate: January 23, 1939
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: San Mateo, California
Died: March 14, 1995

 13 Maajid Nawaz

Maajid Nawaz
6
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: November 2, 1977
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Southend-on-Sea, Essex, England

As a young boy, Maajid Nawaz had frequent clashes with the skinheads of Essex. Born in England, the SOAS and LSE alumnus had a 4-year stint in an Egyptian jail for his association with the Islamic extremist group Hizb ut-Tahrir. He now promotes secular Islam and has also advised David Cameron.

 14 Andrew Koenig

Andrew Koenig
3
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: August 17, 1968
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, USA
Died: February 14, 2010

 15 Van Jones

Van Jones
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Famous As: Motivational speaker
Birthdate: September 20, 1968
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Jackson, Tennessee Jackson, Tennessee, United States U.S.

Especially known for his honest and poignant commentaries, Van Jones is an award-winning political contributor, commentator, and the host of popular CNN programs like Van Jones Show and The Redemption Project. Also a leader in the fight for criminal justice reform for more than twenty-five years, he has founded number of non-profit organizations and authored several best-selling books.

 16 Henry Dunant

Henry Dunant.
3
Famous As: Founder of the Red Cross
Birthdate: May 8, 1828
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Geneva, Switzerland
Died: October 30, 1910

Henry Dunant was a Swiss businessman, social activist, and humanitarian. He is credited with co-founding and promoting the Red Cross. In 1901, he became the first Swiss Nobel laureate when he was honored with the Nobel Peace Prize. Dunant is also credited with founding the Swiss branch of YMCA. His life inspired the 1948 historical drama film, Man to Men.

 17 Ronan Farrow

Ronan Farrow.
2
Famous As: Journalist, Activist, Human Rights Lawyer
Birthdate: December 19, 1987
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New York City

American journalist Ronan Farrow played a major role in reporting the sexual abuse allegations against Harvey Weinstein. His work, which was published in The New Yorker, earned the magazine the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. He is also responsible for exposing allegations against personalities like jurist Brett Kavanaugh, media executive Les Moonves, and politician Eric Schneiderman.

 18 Denis Mukwege

Denis Mukwege
3
Famous As: Gynecologist
Birthdate: March 1, 1955
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bukavu, Democratic Republic of the Congo

 19 Geronimo Pratt

Geronimo Pratt
3
Famous As: Civil rights advocate, Human rights activist, Vietnam veteran
Birthdate: September 13, 1947
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Morgan City
Died: June 3, 2011

 20 Mangosuthu Buthelezi

Mangosuthu Buthelezi
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: August 27, 1928
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Mahlabathini, South Africa

Mangosuthu Buthelezi is a South African politician who is credited with founding the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP). He was widely regarded as one of the most important black leaders during the apartheid era. From 1994 to 2004, he served as South Africa's minister of home affairs. He has also won many awards, such as Nadaraja Award and Magna Award.

 21 Roy Jenkins

Roy Jenkins
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Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: November 11, 1920
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Abersychan, Monmouthshire (historic) Monmouthshire, Wales
Died: January 5, 2003

Born to an MP father who was also associated with the mine workers’ union, Roy Jenkins grew up to be Labour Party member and then became the first to lead the Social Democratic Party. An Oxford alumnus, he later led his alma as its chancellor.

 22 Craig Kielburger

Craig Kielburger.
3
Famous As: Canadian Author
Birthdate: December 17, 1982
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Thornhill, Vaughan, Canada

At age 12, Craig Kielburger and his brother read about a child laborer of his age who was murdered in Pakistan for protesting against child labor in his country, and the duo immediately stepped into action. Their organization Free the Children led to the formation of the WE Movement.  

 23 Jack Herer

Jack Herer
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: June 18, 1939
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Buffalo NY, United States
Died: April 15, 2010

 24 Alan Lomax

Alan Lomax.
3
Famous As: Folklorist
Birthdate: January 31, 1915
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Austin
Died: July 19, 2002

 25 Marquis de Condorcet

Marquis de Condorcet.
3
Famous As: Mathematician, Philosopher
Birthdate: September 17, 1743
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Ribemont, France
Died: March 28, 1794

French mathematician and philosopher Marquis de Condorcet was a champion for liberal economy and women’s rights. He was a significant contributor of the Encyclopédie and was part of the Academy of Sciences. He is also remembered for his political activities in the wake of the French Revolution.

 26 Ramsey Clark

Ramsey Clark
3
Famous As: American lawyer
Birthdate: December 18, 1927
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Dallas, Texas, US

 27 Walter Sisulu

Walter Sisulu
3
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: May 18, 1912
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ngcobo, South Africa
Died: May 5, 2003

Walter Sisulu was a South African activist who played an important role in the anti-apartheid movement. Counted among the most important members of the ANC, Sisulu served more than 25 years in prison for his anti-apartheid activities. For his contribution to the success of the ANC, Sisulu was honored with the prestigious Isitwalandwe Seaparankoe in 1992.

 28 Bogd Khan

Bogd Khan
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Famous As: Mongolian head of state
Birthdate: 1869 AD
Birthplace: Litang, Sichuan, Qing Dynasty
Died: May 20, 1924

 29 Ziauddin Yousafzai

Ziauddin Yousafzai.
3
Famous As: Education Activist, Diplomat
Birthdate: April 20, 1969
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Shangla, Pakistan
Better known as Nobel Prize-winning activist Malala Yousafzai’s father, Ziauddin Yousafzai has himself been an education activist since his early days. He opened his chain of schools in the Swat Valley of Pakistan soon after completing his master’s degree. He now runs the Malala Fund to empower girls.

 30 Walter Reuther

Walter Reuther
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: September 1, 1907
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Wheeling, USA
Died: May 9, 1970

 31 Vladimir Bukovsky

Vladimir Bukovsky
3
Famous As: Writer, Human rights activist
Birthdate: December 30, 1942
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Belebey

 32 Chico Mendes

Chico Mendes
3
Famous As: Brazilian environmentalist
Birthdate: December 15, 1944
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Xapuri, Brazil
Died: December 22, 1988

 33 Charles Perkins

Charles Perkins.
3
Famous As: Soccer player
Birthdate: June 16, 1936
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Alice Springs
Died: October 18, 2000

Charles Perkins had initially been a footballer who played for teams such as Everton and coached Pan-Hellenic to fund his university studies. He later gained recognition as an Aboriginal activist after organizing the Freedom Ride to protest against racial discrimination and became the Secretary of the Department of Aboriginal Affairs.

 34 Natan Sharansky

Natan Sharansky
3
Famous As: Politician, Writer, Mathematician, Human rights activist
Birthdate: January 20, 1948
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Donetsk

 35 Jacob M. Appel

Jacob M. Appel
3
Famous As: Historian, Novelist, Writer, Playwright, Medical writer, Human rights activist, Journalist
Birthdate: February 21, 1973
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York City

Author and bioethicist Jacob M. Appel gained fame with his award-winning first novel The Man Who Wouldn't Stand Up. Also known for his essays and short stories, he has seven masters degrees, in subjects ranging from American history to public health. He is also a practicing psychiatrist at the Mount Sinai Health System.

 36 Maziar Bahari

Maziar Bahari
3
Famous As: Film director, Journalist, Human rights activist
Birthdate: May 25, 1967
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Tehran

Iranian-Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari is also a human rights activist and an Emmy-winning filmmaker. He has won honors such as the Oxfam Novib/PEN Award. His book Then They Came for Me was a bestseller, while he has made films such as And Along Came a Spider, mirroring Iran’s society.

 37 Granville Sharp

Granville Sharp.
3
Famous As: Abolitionist
Birthdate: November 10, 1735
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Durham, England
Died: July 6, 1813

 38 Levi Coffin

Levi Coffin
3
Famous As: Abolitionist
Birthdate: October 28, 1798
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Guilford County, North Carolina
Died: September 16, 1877

 39 Jan Egeland

Jan Egeland
3
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: September 12, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Stavanger, Norway

 40 Hussein-Ali Montazeri

Hussein-Ali Montazeri
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: September 22, 1922
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Iran
Died: December 20, 2009

 41 Serge Klarsfeld

Serge Klarsfeld
3
Famous As: Political activist
Birthdate: September 17, 1935
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bucharest, Romania

 42 Charles W. Chesnutt

Charles W. Chesnutt
3
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: June 20, 1858
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio, United States
Died: November 17, 1932

 43 Peter Benenson

Peter Benenson
3
Famous As: Lawyer
Birthdate: July 31, 1921
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: February 25, 2005

 44 Avijit Roy

Avijit Roy
3
Famous As: Engineer, Blogger
Birthdate: September 12, 1972
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bangladesh
Died: February 26, 2015

 45 Fazle Hasan Abed

Fazle Hasan Abed.
2
Famous As: Social Worker
Birthdate: April 27, 1936
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Habiganj

Fazle Hasan Abed was a Bangladeshi social worker credited with founding one of the largest non-governmental organizations in the world, BRAC. For his significant contributions to social development, Abed was honored with many national and international awards, including the Laudato Si' Award and LEGO Prize. In 2014 and 2017, he was included in Fortune magazine's World's 50 Greatest Leaders list.

 46 Yuri Orlov

Yuri Orlov
2
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: August 13, 1924
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: September 27, 2020

 47 Roy Campbell

Roy Campbell
2
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: October 2, 1901
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Durban, South Africa
Died: April 23, 1957

 48 Harry Wu

Harry Wu
2
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: February 8, 1937
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Shanghai, China
Died: April 26, 2016

 49 Adolfo Pérez Esquivel

Adolfo Pérez Esquivel.
2
Famous As: Human Rights Activist
Birthdate: November 26, 1931
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Buenos Aires

Adolfo Pérez Esquivel is an Argentine activist, community organizer, writer, painter, and sculptor. He actively opposed Argentina's last civil-military dictatorship in the late 1970s and early 1980s, during which he was subjected to much torture. He was awarded the 1980 Nobel Peace Prize for his bravery. He is also a recipient of the Pope John XXIII Peace Memorial. 

 50 Irwin Cotler

Irwin Cotler
2
Famous As: Lawyer, Politician, Human rights activist, University teacher
Birthdate: May 8, 1940
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Montreal

Apart from teaching law at McGill University, Irwin Cotler has also been a Canadian MP for Mount Royal, the Minister of Justice, and the Attorney General of Canada. He has gained fame as a global human rights lawyer, too, serving as a counsel to prominent political prisoners such as Nelson Mandela.