Nelson Mandela: Biography and Influences Essay

September 29, 2020 by Essay Writer


For a person to have a significant influence on me, he/ she would have to be somebody that has surpassed complicated tribulations and puzzles by going out of his/ her way with one strict ambition; to make this world a better place.

My understanding of a significant influencer is based on such understanding because, in the current world, human life is faced by countless challenges primarily because at some point we all became selfish and took a direction of caring for ourselves not unless we stood a chance of benefiting from some good deeds to our neighbors.

Brief Biography

Nelson Mandela was born on the 18th of July 1918, in Transkei South Africa. He went to the University of Witwatersrand, after that qualifying in law in 1942. After two years, he joined the African National Congress and fought against the ruling party’s apartheid rule after 1948.

Consequently, he went for a trial and was acquitted in 1961. Within a year, Mandela was rearrested for planning to overthrow the government with violence and sentenced to imprisonment with hard labor for five years. Latter on in 1964, his fellow ANC member was arrested, where Mandela stood another trial with them, to be sentenced for life imprisonment (Nobel foundation 1)

His reputation ironically grew rapidly and steadily during his poisoned years. All over Africa and the whole world, he was looked at as being the most viable black leader in South Africa. His vigor made him the potent symbol of rebellion when the anti-apartheid movement gathered strength.

He was offered freedom intermittently, but he rejected on the grounds of keeping his political position intact. He was released in 1990 and got elected the president of South Africa in 1994 after which he set out to realize the liberty and terminate oppressive policies.

Significant Influences

According to Stengel (1), Mandela is the closest the world has come to a secular saint. I utterly agree with him. Mandela had one big ambition in life; to make the life of black South Africans oppression- free.

There were moments that he refused freedom offered to him provided he stopped causing public uproar against the apartheid rule (Nobel foundation 1). I would like the significant lessons about this single ambition and commitment that Mandela had would be to never back down from your ambitions no matter how hard discouragements come along.

After studying law, Mandela immediately joined the ANC to restore fair laws to all the South Africa individuals. I can bet that there were many opportunities for him to join private firms and make big amounts of salaries while living a silent and comfortable life.

With such opportunities, Mandela still decided to make the most practical and life-changing application of his career. This is a significant influence on me; life is not about being comfortable with your talent and skill; it is about using your capabilities to better the life of those who need help.

Nelson Mandela Join the ANC as an arena for him to engage in peaceful campaigns against the apartheid rule. However, after his arrest, ANC was disbanded. On his first release from prison in 1961, Mandela set out to secretly reorganize ANC with a military agenda to physically fight against the apartheid rule. There is a very significant lesson learned for this episode; when you have a dream, you have to fight against all odds to make sure that you realize it.


Nelson Mandela has lived a fulfilling life that has seen the whole world give him much recognition and credit. However, giving a critical look at his style of chasing dreams, I know that we can all achieve on whatever we set out to do. He has been such a significant influence on me.

Works Cited

Nobel Foundation. Nelson Mandela – Biography. 2010. Web.

Stengel Richard. Mandela: His 8 lessons of leadership. 2008. Web.

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