George Monbiot was born in 1963 and has been active in defending human rights for most of his life. He has also suffered greatly for this cause. He has been involved in protests against mahogany imports and genetic engineering. In Britain, he joined the roads protest movement and was hospitalised by security guards who drove a metal spike through his foot, smashing the middle bone.

A few years ago, Monbiot was persona non grata in seven countries and had a life sentence in absentia in Indonesia. During seven years of investigative journeys in Indonesia, Brazil and East Africa he was shot at, beaten up by military police, shipwrecked and stung into a poisoned coma by hornets. He came back to work in Britain after being pronounced clinically dead in Lodwar General Hospital in north-western Kenya, having contracted cerebral malaria.

George Monbiot became a visiting fellow of Green College, Oxford, then visiting professor in philosophy at the University of Bristol. He is now honorary professor in politics at Keele and visiting professor in environmental science at the University of East London.

Monbiot has founded The Land is Ours, which has occupied land all over Britain, including 13 acres of prime real estate in Wandsworth belonging to Guinness and destined for a giant superstore. The protesters won against Guinness in court, built an eco-village and held onto the land for six months.

In 1995 Nelson Mandela presented Monbiot with a United Nations Global 500 Award for outstanding environmental achievement. He has also won a Lloyds National Screenwriting Prize for his screenplay The Norwegian, a Sony Award for radio production, the Sir Peter Kent Award and the OneWorld National Press Award. He has been named by the Evening Standard as one of the 25 most influential people in Britain, and by the Independent on Sunday as one of the 40 international prophets of the 21st Century.

George Monbiot is the author of Captive State: the corporate takeover of Britain, and the investigative travel books Poisoned Arrows, Amazon Watershed, Gifpijlen and No Man's Land. He writes a weekly column for the Guardian newspaper.

"Tell people something they know already and they will thank you for it.
Tell them something new and they will hate you for it."
-from the book Captive State

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