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This is a review of the Doris Kearns Goodwin Teaches U.S. Presidential History and Leadership class from MasterClass!
The MasterClass Instructor – Doris Kearns Goodwin
Doris Kearns Goodwin opens this class with a great introduction to her goals for teaching this class and what shaped her love of history. Doris’ love for history came from her interest in storytelling. She talks about how stories have the ability to bring people back to life. People remember stories more often than they remember facts, which gives these stories of leadership power and provide the opportunity to learn from them.
For those who are not familiar with Doris Kearns Goodwin, she is a world-renowned presidential historian, who has written many books about numerous presidents. She is also known for her ability to use her presidential expertise to build a foundation for how to be a great leader.
Doris Kearns Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize–winning historian whose groundbreaking scholarship and keen insights have reshaped the way we view the American presidency. Her bestselling books about presidents in times of crisis and profound transition— including Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon Baines Johnson—reveal how innate ability, learned experience, humility, empathy, and a flexibility of mind have shaped our greatest chief executives.
Doris has created this class to not only share her knowledge of presidential history, but to learn from America’s great leaders on how to better understand human nature. The goal of this class is to teach viewers how to develop the skills needed to be a great leader, by looking at the triumphs and failures of four American presidents: Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, and Lyndon Johnson.
U.S. Presidential History and Leadership – Who is it for?
This class is really for anyone who wants to learn what it takes to be a great leader! This class does use historic political leaders as a model for leadership, but the tools and lessons taught in this class focus on human nature and are applicable to everyone. And for those who are aspiring to becoming a political leader, this class creates a wonderful foundation, but it also has a few lessons specific to politics about civic leadership, the power of storytelling, and advice for future presidents.
MasterClass Doris Kearns Goodwin – Main Themes
- Ambition for the greater good
- The art of storytelling
- Civic Leadership
MasterClass Workbook – Doris Kearns Goodwin
The workbook is a great addition to this class! It includes a review of every chapter along with lessons in leadership and assignments for viewers. The lessons in leadership section of the workbook outlines how different presidents have displayed and applied the lessons being taught. The workbook also has a great section on recommended readings, to further viewers knowledge on presidential history, information on important dates in the fight for key voting rights, and links to primary sources.
MasterClass U.S. Presidential History and Leadership Key Takeaways
Doris Kearns Goodwin has created a wonderful class that teaches viewers how to be a great leader. She focuses on personal attributes of a leader’s character and certain skills that are important to master. The class includes lessons on how people become great leaders, the importance of emotional intelligence, the art of leading teams, how to create partnerships, how to make informed decisions, navigate crises, the art of storytelling, and how to properly write history.
Ambition is absolutely essential for success in any field.
Not only does this class focus on Doris Kearns Goodwin’s historical expertise, but many of her lessons come from her experience as an intern to the Lyndon Johnson White House. She talks about how this experience shaped her view of presidential leadership and continued to inspire her love of storytelling. Her experience working in the White House really provides great perspective on the value of a leader’s character and values, rather than just their skills or accomplishments.
Final Thoughts on Doris Kearns Goodwin’s MasterClass
This class was intriguing from the very beginning! Doris Kearns Goodwin has created an educational and engaging class that challenges viewers to find the great leader within themselves. If you are someone who is looking to strengthen your leadership skills through understanding some of America’s greatest presidents, then this is the class for you!
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