10 Astronauts Who Became Pop Icons

Being an astronaut may not sound like such a dream job nowadays as it has done in the past—but there was once a time when almost every child dreamed of shuttling into space.

The space race between the USSR and the USA—not to mention countless blockbuster space films—created a popular conception of astronauts as some of the most heroic, intrepid, and glamorous people in the world. This list will attempt to rank the ten most famous, inspirational, and influential astronauts of all time, who each changed the course of history by breaking down one or another of humankind’s barriers.

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