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Infamous Examples

Use the name-cards that would be most relevant to your students. Use blank cards to create additional cards tailor-made to accommodate your students’ knowledge and interests. Distribute one card to each small group.

Marcus Brutus
Roman senator who agreed to join the conspiracy to assassinate his friend, Julius Caesar. He may have done so to prevent Caesar from claiming too much power and becoming a tyrant, or he may have done so for other reasons.
Robert Hanssen
A former FBI counter-intelligence agent who sold United States intelligence secrets to the Soviet Union, and later Russia, between 1979 and 2001. His activities led to the deaths of a number of members of, or informants for, the U.S. intelligence service. The subsequent report described his actions as “possibly the worst intelligence disaster in U.S. history.” He did all this for nearly $1.5 million and diamonds.
Judas Iscariot
One of the twelve disciples of Jesus Christ. He is the one who betrayed Jesus for thirty pieces of silver and led the Roman soldiers to Jesus. In paintings of “The Last Supper,” Judas’s cup is typically portrayed as having overturned and spilled. After Jesus’s crucifixion, Judas hanged himself.
Aldrich Ames
A former CIA counter-intelligence officer who gave U.S. intelligence secrets to the Soviet Union, and later Russia, between 1985 and 1993. Numerous members of the U.S. intelligence service, or their informants, were executed by the Soviets as a result of the information he provided. His motivation for selling the secrets appeared to be money to support a lifestyle more luxurious than he could otherwise afford.
Lord and Lady Macbeth
From Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Lord Macbeth is a general in King Duncan’s army and eventual Thane of Cawdor. Lady Macbeth is his wife. After speaking with the Three Witches, Lord Macbeth entertains visions of becoming king. When he hesitates at this ambition, Lady Macbeth strongly urges him to kill King Duncan in order to seize power for himself. He does so and, in the aftermath, additional murders occur.
The Chicago Black Sox
Eight players for the Chicago White Sox during the 1919 World Series in which the White Sox lost to the Cincinnati Reds. These players were accused of intentionally losing games in exchange for money. Although acquitted of charges, they were banned from baseball for life. Questions have been raised about whether one of the players, Joe Jackson, had truly been a full participant in the plot.
The Cambridge Five
Five British men who infiltrated the highest levels of British intelligence services while spying for Russia during World War II, and for the Soviet Union during the Cold War. After being recruited by the KGB in the 1930s, Kim Philby then recruited four of his Cambridge classmates—Donald Maclean, Guy Burgess, Anthony Blunt, and allegedly John Cairncross—to the spy ring. They sought no compensation for their work, apparently motivated by political solidarity with Soviet communism.
From the animated film and Broadway musical The Lion King. The younger brother of Mufasa, King of the Pride Lands. Jealous for power, he murders Mufasa and allows Mufasa’s young son, Simba, to believe himself responsible. Simba runs away into exile. Scar tells the other lions that both Mufasa and Simba have been killed, and proclaims himself the next king.
Prince Hans
From the animated film Frozen. The prince is the youngest of 13 siblings and, therefore, with no country of his own to eventually rule. He courts the orphaned Princess Anna, proposing marriage shortly after having met her. Once he believes both she and her sister, Queen Elsa, will soon be dead, he reveals that his true aim has been to acquire power as Arendelle’s new monarch once both sisters have died.
President Snow
From the book and film The Hunger Games. Tyrannical president of Panem. Although his title is president, it is unclear whether he was democratically elected. He is in charge of the oppressive military regime that rules Panem’s districts, disturbed about the uprisings begun by Katniss and Peeta, and ruthless in his actions to preserve both his pride and his power.
Darth Vader
From Star Wars. Former Jedi knight who turned to the Dark Side of the Force in order to gain power. He serves alongside a Sith master (Siths are enemies to the Jedi and try to master the dark side of the Force), and as apprentice to the emperor of the Galactic Empire. Having left the Jedi order for the Siths, he mercilessly fights against the Jedis in order to maintain Galactic power. His son Luke’s eventual willingness to sacrifice himself on his behalf eventually redeems Vader.