Nelson Mandela A Hero Analysis

2017 Words 9 Pages
Specifically looking at figures in the Civil Rights Movements in both South Africa and America, there is no denying that it is generally agreed upon according to the sources below that Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela are considered to be some of the world’s most admired heroes. They have no doubt played a role and had influence in the struggle for black human rights. However, on a broader spectrum, one must ask oneself if heroes are not merely icons to a greater movement, or do the independent actions of these figures make a larger difference?

According to Aristotle “A man doesn't become a hero until he can see the root of his own downfall." In Aristotle’s terms, a hero must suffer more than he deserves, is noble in nature, but imperfect
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In the source, Mandela explains how the wardens would call him and his fellow activists “Kaffirs” and received discriminatory treatment. The true honour is shown not in those moments but rather Mandela’s moments after prison in his compassion and ability to preach and encourage forgiveness – to leave a legacy not of hate and contempt for the white man, but to rather create a country of unity. He believed in South Africa’s ability to right a wrong, to build something new out of so many that were destroyed. In Aristotle’s terms, a hero must suffer more than he deserves, and understand his doom. Mandela faced prison with strength and bravery and walked out with the same ideals that made him walk in, he was willing to suffer and willing to die – just as a hero …show more content…
They each played a prominent role and had influence in the civil rights movement in America and downfall of apartheid in South Africa respectively. The legacy of each man is debated and questioned but ultimately their leadership in black human rights activism is unquestionable. They were not merely icons for a bigger movement – but rather lead the movements with their actions and words. They were willing to risk their lives – encourage others to do the same, endure prison – and encouraged others to still love the people who put them there. What they did had an impact on the people who had suffered the tragedy of discrimination, and more importantly what they said had real power to create a change in societies that desperately needed revolutionary leaders like these men. These men can justifiably be called heroes as they held tragedy in their hands and chose to build a better future with those same hands instead of raising their fists. Without Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela, we would have nations without heroes. We needed these heroes and without them, history would be written a very different way, with more blood and less change. Lastly, according to Aristotle there is a combination of fear and admiration involved in the identification and

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