The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin was written by Benjamin Franklin from 1771 to 1790; however, Franklin himself appears to have called the work his Memoirs. Although it had a torturous publication history after Franklin's death, this work has become one of the most famous and influential examples of autobiography ever written.
A lifelong scholar of Benjamin Franklin's life completes the unfinished "Autobiography" with information on Franklin's attitudes about such topics as the Constitutional Convention, slavery, and Thomas Jefferson.
Read about the fascinating life of Benjamin Franklin, prolific philosopher, inventor, and Founding Father of the United States, in this beautifully illustrated version of his autobiography. American icon Benjamin Franklin is known for many things: he published the famous Poor Richard's Almanack, helped found the world-famous University of Pennsylvania, and was the first Postmaster General of the United States. His iconography is everywhere. His likeness adorns, among other things, the United States' hundred-dollar bill. Franklin was a wildly intriguing personality, as his autobiography makes plain. From his hoarding of his pay as a teenager to buy books, to his disapproval of habits like drinking beer, from his work as a printer, to his experiments with electricity, this is the story of Franklin's life--told as only he could tell it--in the years before the American Revolution. Benjamin Franklin's writings represent a career of literary, scientific, and political efforts which extended nearly the entire eighteenth century and the birth of the United States. This heavily illustrated version of Franklin's autobiography includes his reflections on diverse questions such as philosophy and religion, social status, electricity, American national characteristics, war, and the status of women. A classic in the American canon, Franklin's autobiography is a must-read for any serious student of American history.
Printer and publisher, author and educator, scientist and inventor, statesman and philanthropist, Benjamin Franklin was the very embodiment of the American type of self-made man. In 1771, at the age of 65, he sat down to write his autobiography, "having emerged from the poverty and obscurity in which I was born and bred to a state of affluence and some degree of reputation in the world, and having gone so far through life with a considerable share of felicity." The result is a classic of American literature. On the eve of the tercentenary of Franklin's birth, the university he founded has selected the Autobiography for the Penn Reading Project. Each year, for the past fifteen years, the University of Pennsylvania has chosen a single work that the entire incoming class, and a large segment of the faculty and staff, read and discuss together. For this occasion the University of Pennsylvania Press will publish a special edition of Franklin's Autobiography, including a new preface by University president Amy Gutmann and an introduction by distinguished scholar Peter Conn. The volume will also include four short essays by noted Penn professors as well as a chronology of Franklin's life and the text of Franklin's Proposals Relating to the Education of Youth in Pennsylvania, a document resulting in the establishment of an institution of higher education that ultimately became the University of Pennsylvania. No area of human endeavor escaped Franklin's keen attentions. His ideas and values, as Amy Gutmann notes in her remarks, have shaped the modern University of Pennsylvania profoundly, "more profoundly than have the founders of any other major university of college in the United States." Franklin believed that he had been born too soon. Readers will recognize that his spirit lives on at Penn today. Essay contributors: Richard R. Beeman, Paul Guyer, Michael Weisberg, and Michael Zuckerman.
We Americans devour eagerly any piece of writing that purports to tell us the secret of success in life; yet how often we are disappointed to find nothing but commonplace statements, or receipts that we know by heart but never follow. Most of the life stories of our famous and successful men fail to inspire because they lack the human element that makes the record real and brings the story within our grasp. While we are searching far and near for some Aladdin's Lamp to give coveted fortune, there is ready at our hand if we will only reach out and take it, like the charm in Milton's Comus.
A study guide for Benjamin Franklin's autobiography.
Book Excerpt: ...y, to that persecution, as so many judgments of God to punish so heinous an offense, and exhorting a repeal of those uncharitable laws. The whole appeared to me as written with a good deal of decent plainness and manly freedom. The six concluding lines I remember, though I have forgotten the two first of the stanza; but the purport of them was, that his censures proceeded from good-will, and, therefore, he would be known to be the author."Because to be a libeller (says he) I hate it with my heart; From Sherburne town, where now I dwell My name I do put here; Without offense your real friend, It is Peter Folgier."My elder brothers were all put apprentices to different trades. I was put to the grammar-school at eight years of age, my father intending to devote me, as the tithe of his sons, to the service of the Church. My early readiness in learning to read (which must have been very early, as I do not remember when I could not read), and the opinion of all his friends, that I should certainly m...
Autobiography Of Benjamin Franklin: Edited From His Manuscript, With Notes And An Introduction, BY JOHN BIGELOW. CONTENTS. PAGE - 1 INTRODUCTORY ................ 7 FRANKLINS OUTLINE OF TOPICS ........ 61 THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF FRANKLIN . ...... 65 APPENDIX.. Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. We are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.
This authoritative Bantam Classic edition presents readers with a wide-ranging selection of Benjamin Franklin’s most important writings, illuminating the complex and appealing character of this quintessential American who rose to fame as a publisher, inventor, educator, bon vivant, and statesman. Here are selections from Franklin’s newspaper articles, from the sage wisdom of Poor Richard’s Almanac, from his entertaining letters, from his scientific essays, from his political and revolutionary writings, plus a generous sampling of his famous aphorisms, poems, and humor. And, most important, here is a newly edited text of one of the most vital and important works of American literature, the Autobiography. As fascinating and as relevant as ever, this timeless collection of writings reveals an extraordinary man whose mind was always curious, always questioning, and who forever remained dedicated to the principles of truth and liberty.