Profiles in Humanity: The Battle for Peace, Freedom, Equality, and Human Rights

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9780742567016: Profiles in Humanity: The Battle for Peace, Freedom, Equality, and Human Rights
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This compelling book tells the inspirational stories of men and women who fought for peace, freedom, equality, and human rights throughout the twentieth century. These courageous individuals include leading figures such as Mahatma Gandhi, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela, Václav Havel, and Mikhail Gorbachev, as well as Nobel Prize winners Aung San Suu Kyi, Andrei Sakharov, and Muhammad Yunus. Readers will be reminded why Pope John XXIII, long overshadowed by the charismatic John Paul II, was the greatest pope of contemporary times. A new generation will learn that Margaret Sanger was responsible for the single most important advance toward the liberation of women worldwide. They will also come to know some of the valiant women who fought at great personal risk for equal rights in Muslim communities. Cohen highlights the vital roles of Bram Fischer, Helen Suzman, and Donald Woods in fighting apartheid in South Africa and of Jack Greenberg in the struggle against Jim Crow in America. He traces Liu Binyan's efforts to win freedom of the press and to end the abuse of power by the Chinese Communist Party. Finally, he recounts the remarkable stories of some of the thousands of men and women of many nationalities and walks of life who rescued Jews during the Holocaust. Together, these biographies paint an unforgettable portrait of the famous and unsung people who stepped forward with the moral vision to intervene, often at great personal cost, to alleviate human misery.

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About the Author:

Warren I. Cohen is Distinguished University Professor Emeritus, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and senior scholar, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

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Cohen (America's Failing Empire) profiles a diverse group of reformers who risked everything to improve the human condition in this concise composite biography. The author identifies five categories of good works—nonviolent resistance, women's rights, racial equality, human rights and freedom from want—and populates each with representative figures ranging from humanitarian icons (Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela) to the relatively obscure (Jack Greenberg and Liu Binyan). Given his criteria, there also are surprises: Pope John XXIII and Franklin Roosevelt are included, despite risking comparatively little in their reform efforts. Roosevelt's inclusion is especially problematic considering that he personally approved the internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII and refused to accept most Jews fleeing Hitler. Few of these public heroes were saints in their private lives, and the book does not shy away from their flaws: according to the author, Gandhi was an abysmal father; King was a notorious womanizer and a serial plagiarist; and Mandela was a wretched husband. Despite some provocative selections, this is a balanced and lively collection of brief biographical sketches of 20th-century humanists. (Aug.)
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Book Description ROWMAN LITTLEFIELD, United States, 2009. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. This compelling book tells the inspirational stories of men and women who fought for peace, freedom, equality, and human rights throughout the twentieth century. Often at great personal risk, they did what they could to alleviate the suffering caused by Hitler, Stalin, and Mao; by racists in America and South Africa; and those who would oppress women everywhere. Tracing the lives of the unsung and the famous, Cohen retraces the lives of such figures as Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr., Pope John XXIII, Aung San Suu Kyi, Margaret Sanger, and Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. Together, these biographies paint an unforgettable portrait of the famous and unsung people who stepped forward with the moral vision to intervene, often at great personal cost, to alleviate human misery. Seller Inventory # AAZ9780742567016

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