Research topic: German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Time Person of the Year

Despite the horrendously unflattering portrait of Angela Merkel on the cover of the magazine, the German Chancellor deserved being named Time Person of the Year for 2015.

Learn more about German Chancellor Angela Merkel for your research paper. (Credit: Confused Sandals)

Learn more about German Chancellor Angela Merkel for your research paper. (Credit: Confused Sandals)

Some interesting research paper topics on Angela Merkel, called the most powerful woman in the world, include her achievements and the small number of women chosen by Time magazine for the honor.

Merkel, most powerful woman in the world

A good term paper topic could be a biography of Angela Merkel and her rise to be named German Chancellor. The daughter of a Lutheran minister in Hamburg, Germany, Angela (née Kasner) Merkel has served as Chancellor of Germany for the past decade, becoming the de facto leader of the European Union, the most prosperous economic joint venture on the planet, according to writer Karl Vick in Time’s article “Chancellor of the Free World.” She is also head of the world’s fourth biggest economy, Germany. By the end of 2015, Merkel “had steered the enterprise through not one but two existential crises, either of which could have meant the end of the union that has kept peace on the continent for seven decades,” said Vick.

Other achievements

Merkel earned Time’s honor for many other reasons. Europe and the Middle East have been inundated with refugees fleeing the years-long civil war torn Syria. When many countries, including the United States, are skeptical about allowing in refugees, Merkel welcomed 1 million asylum seekers by the end of 2015. She also led Europe’s response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s entry into Ukraine. She also helped negotiate deals that would save the euro currency, shared by 19 nations, when European Union member Greece defaulted. And in the wake of the recent terrorist attack on Paris, she stood up for moral leadership to welcome Muslim refugees.

Time editor Nancy Gibbs said on MSNBC, in defense of Time’s choice of Merkel, “She arguably could have been Person of the Year a number of times, but this year is the one I think that pushed her out in front. We call her the chancellor of the free world,” reported in “Angela Merkel named Time’s Person of the Year – the first woman since 1986,” by Jessica Glenza, in The Guardian, December 9, 2015.

Time’s history of choosing women

A good research paper topic could be to research the handful of women chosen by Time. Seems it’s still predominantly a man’s world, according to Time. Throughout the twentieth century, the magazine called the honor “Man” of the Year, until 1999, when it changed the term to “Person of the Year.” Nevertheless, Time has chosen some women. The first was Wallis Simpson, the American divorcée who married Britain’s King Edward, changing the succession to the British throne, in 1936. Simpson was chosen because she “helped lead Britain into a more or less hectic and ‘American’ future,” reported in “Our Wallis” posted in Washington Times February 12, 2007. Other women on Time’s list were Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain in 1952; and a variety of prominent women, in 1975. For those women, Time called it “Woman of the Year (Man of the Year)” in parentheses.

Before Merkel, the last woman to be named by the magazine was in 1986 (29 years ago), with Corazon Aquino, the first woman president of the Philippines who up-ended dictator Ferdinand Marcos, and was the first woman president in Asia. Time claims the reason so few women have been named is because the criteria for the honor goes to people of power and influence who have affected the news, and there have been few women leaders who have had such influence.

For more information, search Questia’s library for Angela Merkel or Time magazine Person of the Year.

Do you think more women should be chosen as Person of the Year?

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