Women played some significant roles this past year, from making peace to crafting economic policy in the midst of a crisis. Here are seven who shaped 2011:
The diplomatic repercussions of the vote in France to criminalize denying the Armenian Genocide have been substantial, but so are the domestic benefits.
Vaclav Havel spent his life fighting for freedom and democratic expression. His legacy stands in sharp contrast to that of Kim Jong-il, who ruthlessly denied his people a voice.
World leaders inside Prague Castle, where Vaclav Havel's state funeral was held today, as well as thousands of Czechs gathered outside, marked him as an unforgettable part of both Czech and global history.
Turkey and France tussle over genocide bill: Turkey, angered by a French bill forbidding denial of the mass killings of Armenians by Ottoman Turks as genocide, accused France of committing genocide during its occupation of Algeria.
Turkey and France traded barbs Thursday, with the Turkish ambassador recalled from Paris. Turkey also suspended all bilateral political, economic and military cooperation.
The French parliament is expected to pass a bill Thursday dealing with the 1915 killing of Armenians in present-day Turkey. Any denial could result in a one-year jail term and a $58,000 fine. Turkey is furious.
Former IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn, whose political life seemed over after sexual assault accusations, is back with a speech criticizing the EU. Does this, and his wife's selection as 'Woman of the Year,' signal his comeback?
Jacques Chirac, a savvy world diplomat and icon of France's ruling establishment for decades, will not go behind bars but was handed a two-year suspended sentence that goes on his criminal record. Anti-corruption crusaders, long frustrated by dirty dealings in the French political machine, rejoiced at the conviction.
European stocks as well as the euro dropped as optimism from last week's euro crisis summit yielded to tough questions about the EU's ability to avert fresh crises.