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Great American Figures

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  1. Great American Figures What makes a person historically important?

  2. Think about it… • Think of the one person who is the greatest American figure…What makes them great? • Write down five qualities that make that person such an important American.

  3. Essential Question • Does man make history or does history make the man?

  4. Thomas Carlyle • Wrote book, On Heroes, Hero-Worship and the Heroic in History • Great Man Theory of Leadership: “history of this world was basically the combined biographies of these great men.” • Effective leaders were a package of Godly motivation and the right personality

  5. Is This True? • Self-Made Man: Anyone who attains far greater success than his original circumstances would have indicated was possible • Throughout history self-made men have made their own way in life by reaching deep inside themselves and through willpower and elbow grease, creating their own destiny • The self-made man often has to overcome great obstacles to achieve his goals

  6. Herbert Spencer • Believed attributing historical events to the decisions of individuals was a hopelessly primitive, childish, and unscientific position • "great men" were merely products of their social environment • The Study of Sociology, “Before he [man] can remake his society, his society must make him.”

  7. Is This True? • History is written by the victor…(what about everybody else?) • Whenever change as happened, it has been through protest, dissent, struggle, social movements, ordinary people picketing, striking, boycotting, sitting down, sitting in • Timing is everything…you have to be in the right place at the right time.