Summer Reading B2G1 Free

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Visit our stores

    Recently Viewed clear list

    Original Essays | July 15, 2015

    Frank Wilczek: IMG You Are... Who?

    Writing a book is an unnatural act of communication. Speaking to a person, or even to an audience, is an interaction. Very different styles are... Continue »
    1. $20.97 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

Qualifying orders ship free.
New Mass Market
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
available for shipping or prepaid pickup only
Available for In-store Pickup
in 7 to 12 days
Qty Store Section
9 Remote Warehouse Anthologies- Essays

The Signet Book of American Essays (Signet Classics)


The Signet Book of American Essays (Signet Classics) Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Featuring Essays by

Benjamin Franklin • Ralph Waldo Emerson • W.E.B. Du Bois  • Albert Einstein • Gloria Steinem • Henry David Thoreau • Martin Luther King, Jr. • Mark Twain • Erma Bombeck • Abraham Lincoln • John F. Kennedy • and More...

These are Americans who had something important to say—and said it in powerful, convincing ways. A compendium of commentary, criticism, and oratory excellence from throughout the nation’s history, The Signet Book of American Essays is a perfect resource for those searching for the most timeless essays ever conceived by America’s notable scientists, philosophers, politicians, and writers.

From the wisdom of Benjamin Franklin to the outspoken empowerment of Gloria Steinem, from the biting satire of Mark Twain to the grave seriousness of Franklin D. Roosevelt, this collection offers the opportunity to learn the subtle arts of persuasion and rational argument as exemplified in these great American dissertations crafted by some of the country’s most brilliant and intriguing citizens.


From Benjamin Franklin and Abigail Adams to Erma Bombeck and Martin Luther King Jr., this anthology contains a mix of historical and contemporary essays by noted American writers and luminaries. Original.

Table of Contents

Signet Book of American Essays Introduction

Aspects of Literacy

1. Benjamin Franklin: from the Autobiography

2. Katherine Peterson: Why

3. Eudora Wetly: Writing and Analyzing the Story

4. Sam Pickering: Composing a Life

5. Richard Lederer: The Miracle of Language

On Education

6. Ralph Waldo Emerson: The American Scholar

7. W.E.B. Dubois: Of the Coming of John

8. Albert Einstein: On Education

Religious Fervor

9. Cotton Mather: On the Trial of Bridget Bishop

10. Abraham Joshua Heschel: The Meaning of this Hour

11. Neal Osterow: Making Sense of the Nonsensical

Intellectual Freedom

12. Leonard Everett Fisher: Censorship and the Arts

13. Lance Morrow: In Praise of Huckleberry Finn

14. Judith Krug: Intellectual Freedom, Libraries, and Censorship

Women Speak Out

15. Abagail Adams: Letter from Braintree, 31 March 1776

16. Gloria Steinem: A New Egalitarian Life Style

17. Sandra Cisneros: Only Daughter

18. Hillary Rodham Clinton: Remarks to the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women Plenary Session

19. Anna Quindlen, The War We Haven't Won

Individual Rights

20. Henry David Thoreau: Civil Disobedience

21. Martin Luther King. Jr.: Letter from a Birmingham Jail

On the Lighter Side

22. George Plimpton: Desperately Seeking Humor

23. Mark Twain: Advice to Youth

24. Erma Bombeck: Warning: Families May Be Dangerous to Your Health

America at the Crossroads

25. Abraham Lincoln: Second Inaugural Address, March 4, 1865

26. Franklin D. Roosevelt: Joint Address to Congress, December 8, 1941

27. Dwight D. Eisenhower: Farewell Adress, January 17, 1961

28. John F. Kennedy: Special Message to Congress on the Defense Budget, March 28, 1961

Product Details

Weiss, M. Jerry
Signet Classics
Weiss, M. Jerry
Weiss, Helen
Weiss, M. Jerry
Weiss, Helen
American - General
American essays
Edition Description:
MM Picture Book
Signet Classics
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
from 12
6.8 x 4.12 x 1 in 0.39 lb
Age Level:
from 18

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » Essays
Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » General
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

The Signet Book of American Essays (Signet Classics) New Mass Market
0 stars - 0 reviews
$8.95 In Stock
Product details 368 pages Signet Classics - English 9780451530219 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , From Benjamin Franklin and Abigail Adams to Erma Bombeck and Martin Luther King Jr., this anthology contains a mix of historical and contemporary essays by noted American writers and luminaries. Original.
  • back to top


Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at