Nikola Tesla's Definition Of Greatness

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Robert Kennedy once said that “Few will have the greatness to bend history itself,” but what defines ‘greatness’? Historically, the debate on ‘what is greatness?’ has been extensively explored. The inconsistency in the characterizations and descriptions of greatness along with the suggested answers to the question ‘what is a great person?’ have driven prior conflicting voices to exceed into the present. In continuing to develop as a controversial subject, contemporary voices have joined the debate in which greatness still eludes a precise definition. Encyclopaedia Britannica lists Nikola Tesla as one of the ‘top ten most fascinating people in history’, a genius in his field of work; credited as the inventor of the Alternating current, the radio …show more content…
The great man theory asserts that history can be largely explained by the impact of "great men." Scott Kaufman suggests that ‘striving for greatness is a fundamental human drive. How we conceptualize greatness and its developmental trajectory has important implications for education, business, and society.’ Kaufman Challenges the great man theory by including men and women who were not necessarily leaders. Don Yeager’s trait theory suggests that there are 16 characteristics that define a great person. Following the three aforementioned theories and definitions of greatness it is evident that Tesla could be labeled ‘great’ as he displays the appropriate characteristics for three vast and individual ideas of greatness.

Nikola Tesla “lived a hundred years ahead of his time,” (Cohen, 2011) a fact that is supported by the total lack of hindrance the Croatian society had upon his ambitions, despite the major social and political changes Croatia was undertaking during Telsa’s time period. However, without the changes being made during the late 1800’s Tesla’s education could have been
…show more content…
If ever asked who was the genius behind the creation of the Lamp, most people acknowledge Thomas Edison. (Krystek, 2015) But just as influential to the process, possibly even more so then Edison, was Nikola Tesla, who’s impact on contemporary society is extensive far beyond the Lamp. Tesla moved to the United States in 1884, at the age of 28, and by 1887 had filed for a number of patents that included everything vital to produce electricity using alternating current. At “the end of the 19th century it was a war of currents -- with Tesla acting as one general and Edison acting as the opposing general.” (Harris, 2015) Edison’s Lamps, which used direct current where weak and inefficient unable to provide the high voltage necessary for long distance transmission. Whereas Tesla developed the Polyphone alternating current system which generated a stronger transmission of high voltage currents making it easier to be distributed over long distances. The Polyphone alternating current system or the ‘induction motor’. Tesla’s system has been greatly improved since it was invented in 1887 and its simple technological elegance and inherent reliability continues in guaranteeing its importance in contemporary society and the foreseeable high-tech future. Ultimately it was Tesla who emerged the victor from the ‘war of currents’ and his system is still used to power the world today. (Cochran, 1989) Additionally,

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