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A Benjamin Franklin Reader

by

A Benjamin Franklin Reader Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Selected and annotated by the author of the acclaimed Benjamin Franklin: An American Life, this collection of Franklin's writings shows why he was the bestselling author of his day and remains America's favorite Founder and wit.

As a twelve-year-old apprentice in his brother's print shop, Benjamin Franklin taught himself to be a writer by taking notes on the works of great essayists such as Addison and Steele, jumbling them up, and then trying to recreate them in his own words. By that method, he recalled in his Autobiography, he was encouraged to think he might become a "tolerable" writer. In fact, he became the best, most popular, and most influential writer in colonial America. His direct and practical prose shaped America's democratic character, and his homespun humor gave birth to the nation's unique brand of crackerbarrel wisdom.

This book collects dozens of Franklin's delight-ful essays and letters, along with a complete version of his Autobiography. It includes an introductory essay exploring Franklin's life and impact as a writer, and each piece is accompanied by a preface and notes that provide background, context, and analysis. Through the writings and the introductory essays, the reader can trace the development of Franklin's thinking, along with the birth of the nation he and his pen helped to invent.

Synopsis:

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S GREATEST WRITINGS

Edited and Annotated by Walter Isaacson

Selected and annotated by the author of the acclaimed Benjamin Franklin: An American Life, this collection of Franklin's writings shows why he was the bestselling author of his day and remains America's favorite founder and wit. Includes an introductory essay exploring Franklin's life and impact as a writer, and each piece is accompanied by a preface and notes that provide background, context, and analysis.

Synopsis:

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S GREATEST WRITINGSandlt;BRandgt; andlt;Iandgt;Edited and Annotated by Walter Isaacsonandlt;/Iandgt; andlt;BRandgt; Selected and annotated by the author of the acclaimed andlt;Iandgt;Benjamin Franklin: An American Life,andlt;/Iandgt; this collection of Franklin's writings shows why he was the bestselling author of his day and remains America's favorite founder and wit. Includes an introductory essay exploring Franklin's life and impact as a writer, and each piece is accompanied by a preface and notes that provide background, context, and analysis.

About the Author

Walter Isaacson, the CEO of the Aspen Institute, has been chairman of CNN and the managing editor of andlt;iandgt;Timeandlt;/iandgt; magazine. He is the author of andlt;iandgt;The Innovators: andlt;/iandgt;andlt;iandgt;How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolutionandlt;/iandgt;; andlt;iandgt;Steve Jobsandlt;/iandgt;; andlt;iandgt;Einstein: His Life and Universeandlt;/iandgt;; andlt;iandgt;Benjamin Franklin: An American Lifeandlt;/iandgt;; and andlt;iandgt;Kissinger: A Biographyandlt;/iandgt;, and the coauthor of andlt;iandgt;The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Madeandlt;/iandgt;. He lives in Washington, DC. Follow him on Twitter @WalterIsaacson.

Table of Contents

Contents

Chronology

Key Characters

Introduction

Part 1: The Young Apprentice

Silence Dogood Introduces Herself

Silence Dogood on Courtship

Silence Dogood Attacks Harvard

Silence Dogood's Recipe for Poetry

Silence Dogood Attacks the Puritan Theocracy

Silence Dogood Proposes Civic Improvements

A Dissertation on Liberty and Necessity

Plan of Conduct

Advice to His Sister on Her Marriage

A New Creed and Liturgy

Part 2: The Philadelphia Printer

The First Abortion Controversy

The Busy-Body

Franklin the Editor

The Lessons of Misprints

Rules for Marriage

A Scolding Wife

A Witch Trial at Mount Holly

A Printer's Creed

Sex Sells

Anthony Afterwit on Marriage

Celia Single Responds

In Praise of Gossip

The Discussion Club

How to Please in Conversation

Part 3: Poor Richard and Friends

Introducing Poor Richard

Poor Richard vs. Mr. Leeds

On the Death of Infants

Poor Richard Denies He Is Franklin

Faith Versus Good Works

Poor Richard Blames His Printer

The Drinker's Dictionary

How to Write an Almanac

Poor Richard's Wife Takes Her Turn

Poor Richard Defends Astrology and Wit

A Defense of Religious Tolerance

A Ballad for Deborah

Reasons to Choose an Older Mistress

Polly Baker's Trial

Part 4: The Public Citizen

A Call to Arms for the Middling People

The University of Pennsylvania

How to Be a Good Tradesman

Rattlesnakes for Felons

Magical Squares

On Welfare Dependency

The Albany Plan for an American Union

Catherine Ray

A Parable on Intolerance

The Way to Wealth

Part 5: Lobbyist in London

Reasons for Restoring Canada to France

Mary Stevenson

David Hume

On Observing the Sabbath

When Oil Does Not Calm Troubled Waters

Race and Slavery

Propaganda Agent

A Paean to Deborah

The Grumpy Boarder

More on Welfare Dependence

Cold Air Baths

The Fable of the Lion and the Dog

Polly Gets Married

The Cravenstreet Gazette

A Showdown with Lord Hillsborough

The Seeds of a Total Disunion

How to Weigh a Decision

Ode to a Squirrel

The Cause of Colds

Parody Rules and an Edict Directed at Britain

Part 6: American Rebel

You Are My Enemy

Proposed Articles of Confederation

The Rattlesnake as America's Symbol

Part 7: Ambassador in Paris

An Appeal to France's Interests

The Sale of the Hessians

A Form Letter of Recommendation

The Twelve Commandments, to Madame Brillon

A Proposed Treaty with Madame Brillon

Bagatelle of the Ephemera

Madame Helvétius and Elysian Fields

John Paul Jones

To His Daughter on Fame, Frugality, and Grandchildren

The Morals of Chess

Bagatelle on St. Peter's Tolerance

On Wine and the Elbow

To George Washington on Reputation

John Adams

Dialogue Between the Gout and Mr. Franklin

The Science of Farts

A Fable About Misguided Loyalists

Seducing the French

To Polly on Her Mother and the Futility of War

A Critique of Excess Wealth

On Hereditary Honors and the Turkey

A Vision of America

No Longer His Enemy

Daylight Savings Time

The Prodigal William

On Wishes, Age, and Bifocals

Part 8: Constitutional Sage

The Constitutional Convention

Motion for Prayers

Franklin's Closing Speech

A Miffy Family

Webster's Dictionary

On the Abolition of Slavery

The Final Parody, on Slavery

On Jesus Christ

To Thomas Jefferson

Last Will and Codicil

Part 9: The Autobiography

The Autobiography

Product Details

ISBN:
9780743273985
Author:
Isaacson, Walter
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Author:
Isaacson, Walter
Subject:
Political
Subject:
Historical - U.S.
Subject:
United States - 20th Century
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Scientists - Inventors
Subject:
General Biography
Subject:
Statesmen
Subject:
Printers
Subject:
United States Politics and government.
Subject:
Franklin, Benjamin
Subject:
Biography-Historical
Subject:
Historical
Copyright:
Edition Description:
B102
Publication Date:
June 2005
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
b/w chapter intros
Pages:
576
Dimensions:
9.26x6.14x1.40 in. 1.36 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Biography » Historical
Biography » Political
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » US History » 18th Century
History and Social Science » US History » Colonial America
History and Social Science » US History » Franklin, Benjamin

A Benjamin Franklin Reader New Trade Paper
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Product details 576 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9780743273985 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S GREATEST WRITINGS

Edited and Annotated by Walter Isaacson

Selected and annotated by the author of the acclaimed Benjamin Franklin: An American Life, this collection of Franklin's writings shows why he was the bestselling author of his day and remains America's favorite founder and wit. Includes an introductory essay exploring Franklin's life and impact as a writer, and each piece is accompanied by a preface and notes that provide background, context, and analysis.

"Synopsis" by , BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S GREATEST WRITINGSandlt;BRandgt; andlt;Iandgt;Edited and Annotated by Walter Isaacsonandlt;/Iandgt; andlt;BRandgt; Selected and annotated by the author of the acclaimed andlt;Iandgt;Benjamin Franklin: An American Life,andlt;/Iandgt; this collection of Franklin's writings shows why he was the bestselling author of his day and remains America's favorite founder and wit. Includes an introductory essay exploring Franklin's life and impact as a writer, and each piece is accompanied by a preface and notes that provide background, context, and analysis.
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