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Following in the Footsteps

Jeffrey Gedmin, President & CEO of the Legatum Institute in London, writing about Joseph J Ellis's Revolutionary Summer: The Birth of American Independence, picks out leadership lessons from the book, and says:
We don't read history because it repeats itself. We study history because it reveals and inspires.
I never liked History much in school because the emphasis on remembering events and dates and places and a bunch of other nonsense. It was always like a memory test.

But I do love stories. Be it mythology, history, fiction, real-life accounts, anything. I especially love the ones that provide a way into the head of the protagonist.

As Jeffrey Gedmin puts it, it reveals and inspires.

The most important job of schools, universities, parents, teachers is to help build a sense of perspective among kids, students. Unfortunately, there is very little emphasis on this. Why, many of the people whose job it is to do so, do not themselves have a good sense of perspective on the way things ought to be done.

We shouldn't be trying to follow in the literal footsteps because we live in a fast changing world where nothing really repeats itself.

We ought to follow in the footsteps (in spirit) because it reveals and it inspires. 

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