Wonder who is the most influential figure in American history? Presidents, entrepreneurs, and athletes aside, it is the introspective, rabble-rousing, trailblazing lot of intellectuals and academics who have played a significant role in shaping the American tenor. They are the visionaries, the great innovators who have revolutionized America and the world at large with their standout ideas, thoughts, and actions. They are the thinkers who have dominated every American mind and have been an inspiration behind their roadmap to success. From Chomsky and Rorty to Dewey and Walzer, America has spun out some top notch intellectuals who not only put their ideas and thoughts into practice, but also architected pathways to a more stable and productive American future. Let us meet America's most cited intellectuals and academics in the biographies presented below and acquaint ourselves to their timeline, trivia, and interesting facts. Caveat: These biographies might redefine your take on world and life.
Noam ChomskyNoam Chomsky
07 December 1928
Linguist
Alan WattsAlan Watts
06 January 1915
Philosopher, Writer & Speaker

Sam HarrisSam Harris
09 April 1967
Philosopher, Author

Henry David ThoreauHenry David Thoreau
12 July 1817
Writer and Philosopher

Milton FriedmanMilton Friedman
31 July 1912
Economist, Statistician

Ann DunhamAnn Dunham
29 November 1942
Barack Obama's Mother
Terence McKennaTerence McKenna
16 November 1946
Philosopher, Psychonaut, Ethnobotanist, Author

John DeweyJohn Dewey
20 October 1859
Philosopher

B. F. SkinnerB. F. Skinner
20 March 1904
American psychologist

Abraham MaslowAbraham Maslow
01 April 1908
 
William JamesWilliam James
11 January 1842
Philosopher, Psychologist

Alan GreenspanAlan Greenspan
06 March 1926
American economist
Steven PinkerSteven Pinker
18 September 1954
Psychologist, Linguists

Thomas SowellThomas Sowell
30 June 1930
Economist

Camille PagliaCamille Paglia
02 April 1947
Cultural critic
Zora Neale HurstonZora Neale Hurston
07 January 1891
Folklorist, Anthropologist

David KahnemanDaniel Kahneman
05 March 1934
American-Israeli psychologist
Richard ProennekeRichard Proenneke
04 May 1916
Naturalist

Carl RogersCarl Rogers
08 January 1902
Psychologist

Erik EriksonErik Erikson
15 June 1902
American-German psychologist
Peter DruckerPeter Drucker
19 November 1909
Management Consultant

John RawlsJohn Rawls
21 February 1921
American Philosopher
William Moulton MarstonWilliam Moulton Marston
09 May 1893
Psychologist

Zbigniew BrzezinskiZbigniew Brzezinski
28 March 1928
Former Diplomat, Political Scientist

Kurt GödelKurt Gödel
28 April 1906
Mathematician, Philosopher

Ben BernankeBen Bernanke
13 December 1953
Economist
Bruce H. MannBruce H. Mann
27 April 1950
Professor
Carlos CastanedaCarlos Castaneda
25 December 1925
Author

Margaret MeadMargaret Mead
16 December 1901
Cultural Anthropologist

David McCulloughDavid McCullough
07 July 1933
Author, Historian

Daniel DennettDaniel Dennett
28 March 1942
 
Albert BanduraAlbert Bandura
04 December 1925
Psychologist

Ethan AllenEthan Allen
21 January 1738
Revolutionary War Hero

Christina Hoff SommersChristina Hoff Sommers
28 September 1950
Author, Philosopher

Larry SangerLarry Sanger
16 July 1968
Co-Founder of Wikipedia

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Benjamin GrahamBenjamin Graham
09 May 1894
Economist, Investor
Reinhold NiebuhrReinhold Niebuhr
21 June 1892
Theologian

Murray RothbardMurray Rothbard
02 March 1926
Economist
Alfred North WhiteheadAlfred North Whitehead
15 February 1861
Mathematician, Philosopher

Michael PorterMichael Porter
23 May 1947
Economist, Researcher, Author, Advisor, Speaker

Samuel P. HuntingtonSamuel P. Huntington
18 April 1927
 
Richard ThalerRichard Thaler
12 September 1945
Nobel Prize Winner in Economics (2017)

Franz BoasFranz Boas
09 July 1858
Anthropologist
Roger WilliamsRoger Williams
21 December 1603
Theologian

Randy PauschRandy Pausch
23 October 1960
Motivational Speaker, Educationist, Professor

Henry GeorgeHenry George
02 September 1839
Economist, Politician, Writer

Paul SamuelsonPaul Samuelson
15 May 1915
Economist

Charlotte Perkins GilmanCharlotte Perkins Gilman
03 July 1860
Writer
Paul TillichPaul Tillich
20 August 1886
 

Noah WebsterNoah Webster
16 October 1758
Lexicographer

Will DurantWill Durant
05 November 1885
Writer, Historian, Philosopher

Ken WilberKen Wilber
31 January 1949
Writer, Philosopher
Albert EllisAlbert Ellis
27 September 1913
Psychologist

William Desmond TaylorWilliam Desmond Taylor
26 April 1872
Actor, Director
John Wesely PowellJohn Wesley Powell
24 March 1834
Explorer, Geologist

Kenneth ArrowKenneth Arrow
23 August 1921
Economist & Political Theorist

Robert M. PirsigRobert M. Pirsig
06 September 1928
Writer, Philosopher
Gary BeckerGary Becker
02 December 1930
Economist

Harry Max MarkowitzHarry Markowitz
24 August 1927
Economist
Robert SolowRobert Solow
23 August 1924
Economist

Henry AdamsHenry Adams
16 February 1838
Historian

Paul FarmerPaul Farmer
26 October 1959
 
Francis SchaefferFrancis Schaeffer
30 January 1912
Theologian, Philosopher

Simon KuznetsSimon Kuznets
30 April 1901
Economist
Lillian Moller GilbrethLillian Moller Gilbreth
24 May 1878
Mother of Modern Management

Allan BloomAllan Bloom
14 September 1930
Philosopher

Arthur M SchlesingerArthur M. Schlesinger Jr.
15 October 1917
Historian

Robert C. MertonRobert C. Merton
31 July 1944
Economist
Myron ScholesMyron Scholes
01 July 1941
Economist
Pitirim SorokinPitirim Sorokin
21 January 1889
Sociologist

Edward EverettEdward Everett
11 April 1794
Former American senator

Wassily LeontiefWassily Leontief
05 August 1906
Nobel Prize Winner in Economics

Iris WeinshallIris Weinshall
05 September 1953
CEO of The New York Public Library
Dallas WillardDallas Willard
04 September 1935
 

Douglass NorthDouglass North
05 November 1920
Economist

Robert Lucas Jr.Robert Lucas Jr.
15 September 1937
Economist

William Forsyth SharpeWilliam F. Sharpe
16 June 1934
Economist

James TobinJames Tobin
05 March 1918
Economist
William GlasserWilliam Glasser
11 May 1925
Developer of reality therapy and choice theory

Robert FogelRobert Fogel
01 July 1926
Economist
John HarsanyiJohn Harsanyi
29 May 1920
Economist

Nicholas Murray ButlerNicholas Murray Butler
02 April 1862
Philosopher, Educator

Carl Ortwin Sauer Carl O. Sauer
24 December 1889
Geographer
Bernard BerensonBernard Berenson
26 June 1865
Art Historian

Bob BlackBob Black
04 January 1951
American author
Jonathan EdwardsJonathan Edwards
05 October 1703
American preacher

Lawrence KudlowLawrence Kudlow
20 August 1947
Director of the National Economic Council

William Morris DavisWilliam Morris Davis
12 February 1850
Geographer, Geologist, Meteorologist

Alfred KroeberAlfred L. Kroeber
11 June 1876
Cultural Anthropologist
Theodore William Schultz Theodore Schultz
30 April 1902
Economist

Joseph E. StiglitzJoseph E. Stiglitz
09 February 1943
Economist & Author
William VickreyWilliam Vickrey
21 June 1914
Nobel Prize Winner in Economics

Emily Greene BalchEmily Greene Balch
08 January 1867
Social Activist

Lawrence R. KleinLawrence Klein
14 September 1920
Economist

Daniel Little McFaddenDaniel McFadden
29 July 1937
Economist
Alan DundesAlan Dundes
08 September 1934
Folklorist