Defining Heroism "Heroism is doing something of outstanding benefit to one's society that most would find impossible to perform," says Hobbs, who is researching a book on heroism, courage, fame, and the role of sports in creating heroes”. Angie Hobbs, PhD, professor of philosophy at the University of Warwick in England.
Defining Heroism • Throughout history, Hobbs says heroes emerged from war and gained their title of hero by sacrificing themselves or risking their lives to save others. But sports allow heroes to emerge in times of peace. • However, in order to be truly heroic, she says athletes have to do more than just show physical prowess on the playing field. • "Only if you have those two components together -- that your society thinks you're doing something of outstanding benefit, plus what you're doing is something most people couldn't offer either through mental ability, physical skill, or quality of character-- then you've got the possibility for heroism," says Hobbs.
Defining heroism • In addition, Hobbs says many of the athletic traits revered most in sports heroes such as speed, strength, and endurance were traits that were necessary for success in battle and found in traditional wartime heroes. • An example of a sports hero who fits that bill in her mind is Jesse Owens. Owens displayed not only great physical strength and endurance, but also mental determination and courage in defiantly winning four medals before Hitler at the 1936 Olympic games in Berlin.
Why Do We Need Heroes? • Psychologists say people grow up with a need for heroes, and the media constantly pumps up and publicizes candidates for the choosing. But whom someone looks to as a hero has more to do with their own needs than the accomplishments of the hero.
Why Do We Need Heroes? • Thinking back to our pre test for this unit and the question where you were asked to write down the first name that came to mind when you thought of the word Hero Have a go at making a list of things that you like best about your chosen hero.
Defining heroism • "There is no universal hero," says sports psychologist Richard Lustberg, PhD. "Subjectively, the hero is created within you. Heroes are created as a great way to escape from whatever you need to escape from, and they can supply for you whatever you need."
Why do we need heroes • Experts say the number of sports heroes has also increased in recent years due to psychological factors. • "More and more people are growing up without fathers in the home, so increasingly they turn to other figures -- particularly sports figures -- as a father replacement and as a hero they can identify with, especially in absence of a father figure," says sports psychologist Stanley Teitelbaum, PhD.
Why do we need heroes • "Second, whether we grow up in a one- or two-parent family, we start out with an ideal attachment to our parents, and ultimately along the way they fail us in some way and we experience some disappointment in them," Teitelbaum tells WebMD. "As adults when we find heroes, it's a way of trying to recapture that earlier time when we had this exquisite connection with our initial heroes, our parents."
Why do we need heroes • Lets take a look back at a couple of cartoon characters that depict heroism that might have been shown on T.V when you where young. • Captain • Homer and Bart Simpson After watching these clips take a look back at your list of desirable attributes for your hero and tick off those that appear in the story line of these dvd clips.
Why do we need heroes Now add to that list any attributes that you noted in the hero actions from the dvd clips and think are worthy of inclusion on your list. Then compare your list with your neighbour.
War Hero A Humble Hero - CPL Willie Apiata VC • Corporal Willie Apiata - • “I was doing what I am trained for” • It was just after 3am when the blast of the enemy rocket propelled grenades and machines gun fire ripped into the inky darkness of an Afghanistan hillside. • With his upper right arm shredded by shrapnel, and bleeding profusely, the young SAS soldier lapsed in and out of consciousness. He and his mates, including Willie Apiata, were caught in crossfire in the undulating starkness of the surrounding countryside. • Apiata, unhurt but stunned, was jolted off his vehicle. His critically injured mate at first told Apiata he could make the 70 metre run back to the safety of the main Kiwi group and to the medical assistance he so desperately needed. The men were no longer in darkness however. One of their vehicles was immobilised, and the other was on fire, illuminating the only pathway the men had to safety.
A Humble Hero - CPL Willie Apiata VC • As his mate lapsed into unconsciousness and machine gun fire crackled around him, Apiata made a decision. Fully exposed in the glare of battle to heavy enemy fire and into the face of returning fire from the main troop position, he heaved the injured man onto his back and carried him uphill back to his base. That he was not injured, nor his mate further injured, remains one of life’s mysteries. • There was, in the words of an eyewitness. “a shitload of stuff coming towards them - rocket propelled grenades, machinegun fire, small arms fire. There were explosions everywhere, and they were caught in the middle – how they got through we will never know.” • With the injured man out of further harm’s way, Apiata rearmed himself and returned to join the skirmish. The troop could now concentrate entirely on winning the fire fight. After an engagement lasting about twenty minutes, the assault was broken up and the attackers - there were more than 20 of them, and about 12 New Zealanders - were routed with significant casualties, with the troop in pursuit.
War HeroSir Keith Park • A decorated fighter pilot in World War One, Sir Keith Park was Commander of the RAF during the Allied evacuation from Dunkirk (France) in the early part of World War Two, and in charge of defending London and southern England from German bombing raids during the Battle of Britain.
Sir Keith Park • "If any one man won the Battle of Britain, he did. I do not believe it is realised how much that one man, with his leadership, his calm judgement and his skill, did to save, not only this country, but the world." Lord Tedder – Chief of the Royal Air Force, February 1947.
Susan Devoy is one of New Zealand's most successful sporting champions ever. For nine years Susan was almost unbeatable on the world squash courts. Former New Zealand squash player, Dame Susan Devoy, was ranked Number One in the world continuously from 1983 until her retirement in October 1992, when she achieved her fourth World Women's Squash Championship. She has, remarkably, won the British Open Squash Championship eight times, the last in April 1992 when she was delighted to regain that title having lost it the previous year. Susan was named New Zealand Sportswoman of the Year in 1985, 1987 and 1988. A Member of the British Empire and Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for her achievements in squash, in 1998 Susan became a Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit - the youngest New Zealander since Sir Edmund Hillary to receive such a high accolade from the Queen. Sports Hero Dame Susan Devoy
Sports Hero Jonah TaliLomu, Born May 12, 1975) is a New Zealandrugby union footballer. He had sixty-three caps as an All Black after debuting in 1994. He is generally regarded as the first true global superstar of rugby union. One of the sport's most intimidating players on the field, he has had a huge impact on the game. He was inducted to the International Rugby Hall of Fame on 9 October2007. Lomu burst onto the international rugby scene during the 1995 World Cup in South Africa. At one time Lomu was considered 'rugby union's biggest drawcard', swelling attendances at any match where he appeared..
National organiser of Halt All Racist Tours (HART) 'I think the most important impact of the tour in New Zealand was to stimulate the whole debate about racism and about the place of Maori in our community. 'In South Africa the tour helped to bring, I think, a quicker end to the apartheid regime, along with all the other pressures from all around the world. 'The huge disappointment for me, though, is the fact that while black South Africans have gained political rights in South Africa, their economic positions, their social position is in many cases worse than it was than when they were under white minority rule and that is because of the free market policies being followed by the ANC government Political Hero John Minto
Political Hero Hone Heke: • Hone Heke and his men first chopped down the flagpole that stood on the hill behind Russell (Kororareka) in July 1844. It was repaired but Heke cut it down a further 2 times before the government set up a guard post to protect the flagpole. On March 10 1845, Heke first attacked and killed the guards at the post, and then attacked the town of Russell
Time to Research • What you need to do • Find two people you consider heroes from each of the three categories we have looked at so far: Wartime Politics Sport
Draw up a table like this to write your research result into. This is a homework task.