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
Famous As: Muslim minister and human rights 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
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 Allen Ginsberg

Allen Ginsberg
Famous As: Poet, Writer
Birthdate: June 3, 1926
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Newark, New Jersey, United States
Died: April 5, 1997
Allen Ginsberg, a Beat Generation poet, is best remembered for his 1956 poem Howl, which criticized U.S. capitalism and described homosexual acts, and was thus banned. He earned the National Book Award for The Fall of America and was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for Cosmopolitan Greetings: Poems 1986–1992.

 4 Solomon Northup

Solomon Northup
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.

 5 Mike Farrell

Mike Farrell
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.

 6 Martin Luther King III

Martin Luther King III
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.

 7 Nicholas Winton

Nicholas Winton
Famous As: Banker
Birthdate: May 19, 1909
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: July 1, 2015

Nicholas Winton was a British humanitarian and banker best remembered for founding an organization to save children at risk from Czechoslovakia. He is credited with overseeing the rescue of 669 children from Czechoslovakia just before the commencement of the Second World War. This rescue mission came to be known as the Czech Kindertransport.

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 8 Liu Xiaobo

Liu Xiaobo
Famous As: Chinese Human Rights Activist
Birthdate: December 28, 1955
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Changchun, China
Died: July 13, 2017

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.

 9 Andrew Young Jr.

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

Andrew Young Jr. is an American activist, politician, and diplomat. Young is best known for his role in the civil rights movement; a close associate of Martin Luther King Jr., Andrew Young served as the executive director of a civil rights organization called Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). Andrew Young is a recipient of the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom.

 10 Jello Biafra

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

 11 Ed Roberts

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

Ed Roberts was an American activist best remembered for his contribution to the disability rights movement. Roberts, who became the first student to attend the University of California, Berkeley in a wheelchair, played an important role in inspiring and motivating people with physical disabilities. In 2011, Ed Roberts was inducted into the California Hall of Fame.

 12 Andrew Koenig

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

 13 Andrei Sakharov

Andrei Sakharov
Famous As: Nuclear physicist
Birthdate: May 21, 1921
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: December 14, 1989

Andrei Sakharov was a Russian dissident and nuclear physicist best remembered for designing RDS-37, Soviet Union's first two-stage hydrogen bomb. Also an activist for peace and human rights, Andrei Sakharov was honored with the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975. The Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, which is awarded by the European Parliament, is named in his honor.

 14 Maajid Nawaz

Maajid Nawaz
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.

 15 Ramsey Clark

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

Ramsey Clark was an American activist, lawyer, and federal government official. From 1967 to 1969, he served as US Attorney General under the presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson. Ramsey Clark is remembered for heading several progressive activism campaigns and opposing the U.S. War on Terror, labeling it as a war against Islam. In 1992, he won the Gandhi Peace Award.

 16 Henry Dunant

Henry Dunant
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 Van Jones

Van Jones
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.

 18 Mangosuthu Buthelezi

Mangosuthu Buthelezi
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.

 19 Geronimo Pratt

Geronimo Pratt
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 Denis Mukwege

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

 21 Craig Kielburger

Craig Kielburger
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.  

 22 Ronan Farrow

Ronan Farrow
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.

 23 Jack Herer

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

 24 Reza Pahlavi, Crown Prince of Iran

Reza Pahlavi, Crown Prince of Iran
Famous As: Founder and leader of the self-styled National Council of Iran
Birthdate: October 31, 1960
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Tehran, Iran

 25 Marquis de Condorcet

Marquis de Condorcet
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 Walter Sisulu

Walter Sisulu
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.

 27 Alan Lomax

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

 28 Walter Reuther

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

 29 Ziauddin Yousafzai

Ziauddin Yousafzai
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 Roy Jenkins

Roy Jenkins
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.

 31 Chico Mendes

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

 32 Bogd Khan

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

 33 Charles Perkins

Charles Perkins
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 Vladimir Bukovsky

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

Vladimir Bukovsky was a Russian-born British writer and human rights activist. An important member of the Soviet dissident movement, Bukovsky spent 12 years in prisons, psychiatric prison-hospitals, and labor camps of the Soviet Union. A neurophysiologist, Bukovsky is celebrated for his efforts to expose Soviet Union's political abuse of psychiatry. In 2001, he was awarded the Truman-Reagan Medal of Freedom.

 35 Natan Sharansky

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

A well-known human rights activist, Natan Sharansky not just campaigned for the rights of the Jews and spent 9 years in a prison in Siberia, but was also a chess prodigy, who was a champion at age 14. He has also penned books and won multiple awards.

 36 Vitaly Shishov

Vitaly Shishov
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: 1995 AD
Birthplace: Rechytsa, Belarus
Died: August 3, 2021

 37 Jacob M. Appel

Jacob M. Appel
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.

 38 Maziar Bahari

Maziar Bahari
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.

 39 Granville Sharp

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

Granville Sharp was an activist who became one of the first English campaigners to support abolitionism in the UK. Sharp devised a plan to settle people in slavery and black people in Sierra Leone. He also established the St George's Bay Company and is thus considered a founding father of Sierra Leone. Sharp also worked towards correcting other social injustices.

 40 Shin Dong-hyuk

Shin Dong-hyuk
Famous As: Human rights activist
Birthdate: November 19, 1982
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: North Korea

 41 Jan Egeland

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

 42 Serge Klarsfeld

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

Serge Klarsfeld is a Romanian-born French Nazi hunter and activist. He is best known for recording the Holocaust in order to enable the trial and prosecution of war criminals. Klarsfeld is also renowned for his efforts to commemorate the victims of German-occupied France.

 43 Ruhollah Zam

Ruhollah Zam
Famous As: Journalist, Activist
Birthdate: July 27, 1978
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Ray, Iran
Died: December 12, 2020

 44 Hussein-Ali Montazeri

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

 45 Charles W. Chesnutt

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

 46 Yuri Orlov

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

 47 Fazle Hasan Abed

Fazle Hasan Abed
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.

 48 Peter Benenson

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

Peter Benenson was a British human rights activist and lawyer. He is credited with establishing the popular human rights group and an international non-governmental organization Amnesty International (AI). In 2001, Peter Benenson agreed to receive the prestigious Pride of Britain Award after refusing to accept all honors throughout his career.

 49 Roy Campbell

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

 50 Avijit Roy

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