Case Study 1

Jean Paul Marat

This man is Jean Paul Marat (24 May 1743 – 13 July 1793). Marat was a political theorist, scientist and physician. He was a defender of basic human rights of common people (sans-culottes). His journalism made him an unofficial link to the Jacobins, a political group of the French Revolution. Marat had argued against the Girondins, believing they were out to sabotage the revolution in favor of the French Royalty. He did argue to let King Louis XVI and his counsel live. Marat was assassinated (stabbed) by Charlotte Corday, a Girondin sympathizer, and became a revolutionary martyr to the Jacobins.

Richard Wagner

Next we have Richard Wagner (22 May 1813 – 13 February 1883). Wagner was a German composer and close friend of King Ludwig II (see Case Study 25) from whom he received patronage. Wagner is most popularly known for “Flight of the Valkyres” a composition from one of Wagner’s Operas, originally titled “Ride of the Valkyres.” The song was featured in the movie “The Birth of a Nation” (1915) and “Apocalypse Now” (1979). Wagner produced many musical works, writings and is considered a great influence of 19th century thought. He died in 1883 of an Angina attack.

Django (Jean) Rheinhardt

This man is Django (Jean) Rheinhardt (23 January 1910 – 16 May 1953). Rheinhardt was a Romani guitarist who was one of the first jazz musicians to perform with the guitar as the lead in Europe. He recorded with a few American musicians such as Duke Ellington. He lived in France during the Nazi occupation, and although jazz was considered un-German counterculture music, it’s popularity prevented him from being forced into camps with many of the other Romani people. After the war he continued to perform. Rheinhardt is still considered the most significant European jazz musician. He died suddenly of a brain hemorrhage in 1953 (age 43).

Stevie Ray Vaughan

Everybody knows Stevie Ray Vaughan (October 3, 1954 – August 27, 1990). Vaughan was a Texas born rock/blues guitarist who got his big break in 1983. His exceptional guitar skills and musical style has made him an musical icon. He died at 46 years of age in a helicopter crash in Wisconsin on his way to play a concert in Chicago.

Adam Lanza

This is Adam Lanza (April 22, 1992 – December 14, 2012), Lanza was a mentally disturbed young man who perpetrated the shootings at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012, He was obviously mentally traumatized between lifetimes. Diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, he had an obsession with guns. He lived alone with his mother, whom he shot. He then proceeded to the school where he shot 26 students and teachers before turning the gun on himself. Lanza’s case prompted many gun control measures in the United States as intended.