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Warriors, Rebels, and Saints: The Art of Leadership from Machiavelli to Malcolm X

Warriors, Rebels, and Saints: The Art of Leadership from Machiavelli to Malcolm X

Current price: $30.00
Publication Date: November 7th, 2023
Charter Books
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 Do leaders make history or does history make leaders? A deep dive into how we define, seek, and become leaders.

We live in a period of leadership in crisis. At home, and across the globe, we sense that unqualified and irresponsible individuals are being elevated to positions of power, strong men and autocrats are consolidating their hold on governance, and the people are losing faith in the prospect of a better future. How have we arrived at this point? And how can we correct our course?

For the past decade, Moshik Temkin has challenged his students at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and around the world to grapple with the nature of leadership as part of his wildly popular course “Leaders and Leadership in History.” Now, in Warriors, Rebels, and Saints, Temkin refashions the classroom for a wider audience.

Using art, film, and literature to illustrate the drama of the past, Temkin considers how leaders have made decisions in the most difficult circumstances—from the Great Depression of the 1930s to the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo and from the anticolonial wars of the 20th century to the civil rights struggle—and how, in a world desperate for good leadership, we can evaluate those decisions and draw lessons for today.  

About the Author

Moshik Temkin is Distinguished Visiting Professor of Leadership and History at Schwarzman College, Tsinghua University, and a fellow at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. He received his PhD in History from Columbia University and has taught at Harvard University, Columbia University, and the École des Hautes Études in Paris. He has been a visiting professor and lecturer in India, South Korea, Spain, Mexico, France, and the United States. His articles and essays have appeared in the New York Times, the Nation, the Journal of Democracy, Aeon, the New Republic, Salon, and the Los Angeles Times. His previous books include The Sacco-Vanzetti Affair: America on Trial, which was a finalist for the Cundill History Prize.

Praise for Warriors, Rebels, and Saints: The Art of Leadership from Machiavelli to Malcolm X

"This book is that rare thing among ‘leadership’ titles: a truly original concept...[A]n incredibly well-researched and lively read."—The Financial Times

“A plea for the importance of history in the study of leadership.”—Kirkus

“Moshik Temkin brings together deep historical knowledge, cultural comparison, and sophisticated analysis of what makes leadership, and how individual leaders both reflect their society and shape it in turn. This is a book both empathetic and gripping on a subject of huge importance in our turbulent times.”—Rana Mitter, author of Forgotten Ally: China's World War II, 1937-45

“Ranging across the centuries and around the globe, Moshik Temkin engages questions about leadership that could not be more timely.  In exploring how history both produces and constrains leaders, he offers a thoroughly engaging meditation on a compelling array of individuals who shaped the eras in which they lived. The result is a fascinating, illuminating and cautionary meditation on leadership.”—Ellen Fitzpatrick, author of The Highest Glass Ceiling: Women's Quest for the American Presidency

“In this gem of a book, the accomplished historian and teacher Moshik Temkin performs the crucial task of placing the art of leadership in its historical context. The result is a book chockfull of insights, showing how a careful and unsparing study of past leaders—those who had great power and those who didn’t—can help us identify the attributes we need to see in their successors today.”—Fredrik Logevall, Laurence D. Belfer Professor of International Affairs, Harvard University