Carlyle argued that heroes shape history through the vision of their intellect, the beauty of their art, the prowess of their leadership, and, most important, their divine inspiration. Explain

Figure Chosen: Gloria Steinem
Professor Instructions:
The focus of this research paper will be to analyze one significant historical figure you have found interesting through your reading of the textbook. Your objective will be to choose a person and to analyze their impact on the first half of American History. specifically relating to Thomas Carlyles Great Man theory. The person that you choose must be from the time period of the class. If the person is mentioned in the book, then you can analyze them for your paper.
According to The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, the Great Man Theory is an approach to history associated with the nineteenth-century Scottish historian Thomas Carlyle, who declared, The history of the world is but the biography of great men. Carlyle argued that heroes shape history through the vision of their intellect, the beauty of their art, the prowess of their leadership, and, most important, their divine inspiration. Carlyles theories have generally fallen out of fashion. Today the great man theory is out of favor. Most historians today believe that economic, societal, and technological factors are far more important to history than the decisions made by any individual.
Your goal will be to pick one historical person and show how their life helps disprove The Great Man Theory. You will need to show the weaknesses of Carlyle’s theory and show that history is a lot more complicated than he makes it out to be. This is not a biography, but an analysis of their life. After choosing someone in the textbook that you wish to research further, you will analyze their contributions to history. Do Great Men make great history, or do great events lead to great men? Helpful Websites:
http://www.lycos.com/info/great man theory.html http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1038/is_n3_v39/ai_18348260
http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/carlyle/index.html http://www.bartleby.com/65/ca/CarlyleT.html
Some useful areas to examine are: 1. Background: A brief overview of the person’s early life, educational background, family life, etc. Focus only on the areas that have influenced his/her views. 2. The World Scene: Investigate the time period. What were the problems facing this person’s country, or the people within it? How much was this person shaped by the world around him? 3. Actions of the Historical Figure: What events were they a key part of? What decisions did they make (or not) that they are well-known for? How unique were these actions? 4. Impact: How does this person impact the world in terms domestic policy and on a global scale? What factors influenced the outcome? Would the world be different if this person had never lived?