Amir Ahmad Nasr urges activists in the Arab world to apply the lessons of Sudan's past to the transitions taking place today. Examining the limits of the 1964 and 1985 revolutions, Nasr notes the ways in which the Arab world is different today than in was in 1964 and 1985—ways that could help the Arab Spring revolutions succeed. For example, satellite TV and social media have paved the way for the flow of information. Ahmad asks the audience before he starts if it is hopeful about the future of the Arab world. At the end of his speech, he reveals his own optimism: as he puts it, "the fear barrier has been broken," and the path to true reform is now open

About

Amir Ahmad Nasr is a leading Sudanese blogger and digital media and marketing consultant. He is the formerly anonymous author of Sudan’s most well-known sociopolitical English-language blog, The Sudanese Thinker. In 2011, in the midst of the Arab Spring, he revealed his identity and has since become an author, human rights advocate, digital activist, and social entrepreneur. Nasr has been featured by The New Yorker, the BBC, The Guardian, and Al Jazeera, among other media outlets. He is currently working on launching an organization called AssertiveChange, focused on deploying multilingual online courses catering to activists and change-makers to develop their skills for bigger impact.

Born in Khartoum, Sudan, and raised in Qatar, Nasr launched his blog, The Sudanese Thinker, in 2006, after growing frustrated by the lack of young Sudanese speaking out about Darfur. His provocative posts and activism helped spur the growth of the English-speaking Sudanese blogosphere, and became one of the main sources for international journalists and audiences seeking a fresh and unique perspective on current affairs and Sudanese events.

Besides enabling Nasr to express himself, new media exposed him to a world beyond the political and religious fundamentalism of his early childhood and teenage years, and he began writing on secularism, religion, and liberal democracy.

Nasr's blog was nominated as a finalist three consecutive times for the Weblog Awards. He is a contributor to Global Voices Online, and the author of a forthcoming book on Islam and new media. He is also the organizer of “The Future of Islam In the Age of New Media," an acclaimed online audio seminar featuring 60 speakers in 60 seconds each for a total of 60 minutes. He is currently pursuing a master’s in philosophy and conducting research on the impact of new media on contemporary Islamic thought.