In 1841, Scottish historian Thomas Carlyle wrote about the Great Man Theory in his book, "On Heroes, Hero-Worship, and the Heroic in History." He believed that the "history of the world is but the biography of great men," and "the Great Man was always as lightning out of Heaven; the rest of men waited for him like fuel, and then they too would flame."
South African artist William Kentridge, British historian Sir Martin Gilbert and American scientist David Botstein are among the winners of this year's prestigious Dan David Prize.
This is an important and profound book. It begins almost as an adventure story rather than the moral examination it really is. The author, Denis Avey, writes that he enlisted in the British army not for love of king and country but for the sheer hell of it.