Heroes are born to be heroes?Heroes are born to be heroes?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

First of all, you would have to define what a hero is if you are going to answer this question.

More importantly, however, I think this is the sort of question that cannot be answered.  Think of the problem this way.  Let us say you have defined what a hero is and you know who all the heroes of history have been.  Let us even say that you can determine that they were "born" to be that way.

Can you still say the statement is true?  To me, you cannot becuause you do not know what has happened to other people who might have been "born to be" heroes.  If they fell short (like the people in Gray's "Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard") you would never have heard of them.

So you can have no idea whether it is true.

booksnmore eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I agree that it really depends on what your definition of a hero is. Sometimes I think being a hero has less to do with how you're born than with being at the right place at the right time. I'm thinking of a situation that happened locally...an acquaintance rescued another person from a burning vehicle on the freeway, minutes before it exploded. The "hero" is a very nice guy. But he could have easily gone through life without ever experiencing "hero status." He happened to be at the right place at the right time. I think there are a lot of people who would have done the same thing in his shoes. I don't know that they're born heroes...they are just born "good people."

drmonica eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Interesting topic for discussion! When I hear the term "hero," as an English teacher I automatically think of Greek mythology and classic literature. There are many stories of ancient heroes who had humble origins, even parents who attempted to ward off their sons' prophesied greatness by leaving them with foster families. The theme running throughout these stories is that if one is born to greatness, fate cannot be denied.

besure77 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that a person's character and individual traits has a lot to do with whether they are a hero or not. It also depends on whether or not they are placed in a position to become a hero. In addition, what is the actual definition of a hero? To me a hero is a person who displays courage and strength in many different situations. This can be done in many ways and in many different circumstances.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator
I think that ordinary people can go about ordinary lives until they are called upon to do something heroic. So while I agree that some people seem to be born heroes, I don't think they actually are. I think a combination of circumstances creates opportunity, and the heroes are the people who react to those circumstances heroically.
epollock | Student

I don't think heroes are born to be heroes. I see heroes all the time and most just happen to be in the wrong/right place at the right/wrong time, depending on your perspective. A hero such as a pilot saving a plane was not born that way, he or she just happened to be the person to take action.

giorgiana1976 | Student

Deane Aikins psychiatrist, professor at Yale University, says that some people can maintain their calm in the most stressful situations, while many others would panic and a secret is found in our genes.
Studies conducted on  American soldiers fighting in Iraq have shown that a minority of them do not react as the great majority.would react to stress.

There are some individuals who, facing with limited circumstances, present a unique profile of hormones. Quite simply, they do not panic as the rest of us do it.

Researcher says that it does not exist "people without fear" but certainly there are people genetically "better equipped" when it comes to face fear. He is convinced that the discovery of  secret of "Heroes" will revolutionize the future armies and it will provide the new image of soldiers.