The recession was the story of the year. Without Ben Bernanke, TIME's 2009 Person of the Year, it would have been a lot worse
The Fed chairman sat down with TIME on Dec. 8 for a conversation about everything from the state of the economy to the contents of his wallet
Person of the Year 1927 - 2011
No one could have known that when a Tunisian fruit vendor set himself on fire in a public square, it would incite protests that would topple dictators and start a global wave of dissent. In 2011, protesters didn't just voice their complaints; they changed the world.
TIME's Person of the Year is bestowed by the editors on the person or persons who most affected the news and our lives, for good or ill, and embodied what was important about the year. See who made the grade over TIME's first eight decades. See them all