Presentation on theme: "Leadin g Minds: An Anatomy of Leadership Adriana Gonzalez Eleanor Roosevelt: Ordinariness and Extrordinariness."— Presentation transcript:
Leadin g Minds: An Anatomy of Leadership Adriana Gonzalez Eleanor Roosevelt: Ordinariness and Extrordinariness
Major Milestones in Eleanor’s life 1884: Eleanor is born. “Yet Eleanor had a singularly unhappy childhood, one that would have left any child scarred, if not permanently disabled” (Gardner 185). 1932: Franklin becomes President of the U.S., making Eleanor the first lady and casting her into the limelight she so often tried to avoid. “She sought to avoid the secret service and even undertook risky travel routes in an effort to preserve a modicum of privacy and autonomy 1921: Franklin contracts polio. “Eleanor threw herself into Franklin’s rehabilitation with enormous energy” (Gardner 189). 1918: Eleanor discovers Franklin having a romantic affair with Lucy Mercer. Marriage of convenience>> “Eleanor determined that she would have to gain sustenance from other relationships and activities” (Gardner 188). 1917: America enters WWI and Eleanor gets involved by working with the Red Cross and several aspects of the Navy for care- related relief. “Perhaps this burgeoning self-confidence, while emerging a bit late, presaged the capacity to challenge that marks leaders” (Gardner 188) 1905: Eleanor marries her distant cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt 1899-1902: Eleanor attends Allenwood School in London, with headmistress and role model Mlle. Marie Souvreste: “Whatever I have become since had its seed in those three years of contact with a liberal mind and strong personality” (Gardner 186).
Eleanor: A Monument to Leadership Pioneer for women’s rights and representation Immediately became involved in social service during the Progressive Era in Washington Worked hand in hand with other leaders in an attempt to learn from and influence them (especially political and some military leaders) Stands up to challenge those in power (starting with her mother-in-law and never stopping from there) Her one true passion was her work and what she could do for others by establishing justice Helped most those who cannot help themselves (impoverished, homeless, African Americans, women) Ability to think outside of the ideas she was raised within (able to empathize, despite her high status and relative lack of need) Remains independent, but also wary of the public eye and respectful of her husband’s need to be seen (becoming her need to be seen) She broke free from her own chains. However, her problems were downplayed and labeled as unspeakables Human (fallible), humane (merciful), humble (stepped out of the limelight), and hopeful (never giving up, always fighting for the underdog) Expanded her influence and passions to include world issues (breadth beyond her community and country) Constantly changing and adapting to the imperatives of the time as well as the needs of her family and followers
Similarities between Eleanor Roosevelt and Martin Luther King, Jr. Attained leadership while lacking formal authority Embodied the stories and causes which they found interest in; arrived at conclusions by reflecting on personal life experiences (Gardner, 185). Invented and reinvented their roles with few or no previous examples to learn from Both had unprecedented access to media, and were therefore able to establish themselves as public voices on a variety of issues (Gardner 193). Standing up in the face of criticism earned them widespread respect, even from their opponents Consider their actions to affect more than their own lives. They do their work and live their lives for others as well as themselves. Roosevelt, maybe even more so, as she was less a member of the marginalized groups she sought to help “In the end, both figures aroused strong reactions- negative as well as positive. Not only were they provided sharp and challenging visions of personal and group identity; more provocatively, they were suggesting that neglected groups actually had identities, ones that all citizens needed to respect” (Gardner, 185).
Differences between Roosevelt and King “At age 21, Eleanor would scarcely have bothered to ponder the questions of who she was and which group she belonged to. Such questions tend to arise most insistently for individuals who feel themselves marginal, distinctly outside of the comfortable mainstream. But Eleanor, both as a single person and as the new wife of Franklin, was about as much a part of the Establishment as one could get” (Gardner 187). Roosevelt reluctantly learned to confront those in power and notes, “To many women, and I am one of them, it is difficult to care enough [about an issue] to cause disagreement or unpleasant feelings, but I have come to the conclusion that it must be done for a time so we can prove our strength and demand respect for our wishes” (Gardner 190). This is different from Martin Luther King Jr.’s integration movement in that it was not difficult for African Americans to care enough about their cause to cause trouble- it was a matter of their every day livelihood and well-being and was detrimental to them in hurtful and hateful ways, undoubtedly breeding resentment and a strong call for action King was strongly rooted and supported in the Church, whereas Roosevelt was less associated with any organization in particular, providing, in essence, her own support (Gardner 200). King was very comfortable in the public eye, and his speech-making abilities were almost inherent. Roosevelt did not like the limelight and preferred to work from the perimeters, but also realized the importance of making yourself known and putting a face and strong words to your causes.