Cultural Focus

By:Lilly Kottak

Thomas Raffles

  • Thomas Raffles was born July 6,1781 off Port Morant. He died July 5,1826 in London,England. He had a rough childhood because his father was an improvident merchant. He grew up in debt, because of this he was forced to quit school at the age of 14. He then entered work at the East India Company as a clerk, to help provide for his mom and four sisters
  • Although he had a brief an inadequate education, he was very determined to study and learn more. He studied subjects such as science,languages, and history at his own leisure. Because of his distinct unique interests he earned a somewhat distinguished reputation. His form of industry was so well known/noticed that appointed assistant secretory to the government of Penang. This was major considering he started from the absolute bottom.
  • He shaped/formulated his career by intensive exploration into the language,history, and the culture of the Malayan people's. This unique and very unheard of study caught the attention of the ever so powerful Lord Minto. Because of the time of crisis, Minto appointed Raffles as his agent.
  • Raffles signed the treaty with Sultan Hussein on February 6,1819, which placed Singapore as a thriving settlement. He also helped in the efforts by contributing time to help establish Singapore. He did this when he ventured out in December 1818, in search of a new British settlement that could eventually replace Malaca.

Cecil Rhodes

  • In the mid 1870's Rhodes spent a brief period of time alone, where he wandered/explored the unsettled plains in South Africa. There he worked hard to develop/perfect his philosophies on British imperialism. Due to a major heart attack in 1877, he unfortunately revealed his ideas of Bristish imperialism in his first will.
  • Rhodes became so successful because he built a career in politics. He was elected to the Cape Parliament, there he eventually succeeded in his main goal to focus the attention on the expansions elsewhere.
  • In 1890, Rhodes becalmed/officially worked as prime minister of the Cape Colony, when he was prime minister he integrated/implemented laws that would benefit mine and industry workers significantly. This made people all over very happy. He introduced the Glen Grey Act, with the mindset to gain more land. His politics were a very significant key to the ongoing rapid development of British imperial policies in South Africa.
  • Rhodes used his excessive and abundant wealth and his successful business partners to pursue his dream of creating/making a British empire in new territories, specifically by obtaining/grasping mineral concessions from powerful indigenous Chiefs.
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Adolf Hitler

  • Germany was struggling majorly when Hitler came to power, billions of people were out of jobs, had no money, and were starving. Hitler took action and began a national credit program, by devising/making public work projects in which Germany benefited. He encouraged women to work at home, creating more job opportunities. The unemployment problem was on its was to being solved.
  • In 1934, Hitler started his dream project. His dream project was simple, it was that every German family had a car (a car that could fit at least 2 adults and 3 children). Hitler worked hand in hand with top notch officials and eventually launched the project. It was presented as the car that every German citizen could afford.
  • Adolf was raised in a "middle class" family. He was not wealthy during the beginning years of his life. He was a solider in World War One, at the time he was nothing out of the ordinary.
  • In 1918 the First World War ended, and Germany was left dry and utterly defeated. Hitler was appalled at the loss. He believed that Jews and other non German groups were at fault for the loss. Hitler soon began rewarding the Germans, and made the Jews pay for it.

Joseph Stalin

  • Stalin grew up in a very poverty strucken/poor family, and had a very tough childhood. His father was an alcoholic and beat Stalin, Stalin then had blurred ideas of what a father was. He studied hard and earned a scholarship to attend a local seminary school to study to become a priest.
  • Stalin's actions in 1922 in the Georgian Affair created a strange sort of rift with Lenin. Lenin thus considered Stalin as a loyal ally, which would be very important later on. Lenin felt he was so loyal that he appointed Stalin to be secretary in 1922.
  • Stalin was head of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist party. He gained/grasped the majority of his power in the 1930's with the Great Purge. Those who were targeted/wanted in the purge, are usually expelled. Some were banished to labor camps and were executed. Stalin was a major threat/emotionally distressed.
  • While he was working as a clerk at the Meteorological observation,Stalin continued in getting what he believed in. He organized many strikes and protests. His rebellious activities quickly became noticed , and he was forced underground.
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Pope John Paul II

  • He was made Cardinal by Pope Paul IV in 1967, and in 1978 he became the first non-Italian Pope in almost 400 years. This was a major turning point in history.
  • He wanted to become a priest but most of the schools were not open for Italians. John Paul II studied at a secret seminary that was ran by archbishop of KraKow. He was ordained in 1946.
  • As a member of the Second Vatican Council, he helped the church consider/closely examine its position in the world. He was a major help to the start of a worldwide revolution.
  • John Paul was a vocal advocate for humane rights. When he spoke he often spoke about topics such as suffering worldwide. He held many oppositions to many government practices, he was not afraid to speak his opinion and stood up for what he thought was right. He had influence, and he used his influence for political change.
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