Benjamin Franklin An American Life (Paperback)
|Author: Walter Isaacson|
|Chronicles the founding fathers life and his multiple careers as a shopkeeper, writer, inventor, media baron, scientist, diplomat, business strategist, and political leader, while showing how his faith in the wisdom of the common citizen helped forge an American national identity based on the virtues of its middle class. Reprint. 150,000 first printing. *Author: Isaacson, Walter *Subtitle: An American Life *Publication Date: 2004/05/04 *Binding Type: Paperback *Language: English *Depth: 1.75 *Width: 7.00 *Height: 9.00|
From the Publisher:
Benjamin Franklin is the founding father who winks at us, the one who seems made of flesh rather than marble. In this authoritative and engrossing full-scale biography, Walter Isaacson shows how the most fascinating of America's founders helped define our national character.
In a sweeping narrative that follows Franklin's life from Boston to Philadelphia to London and Paris and back, Isaacson chronicles the adventures of the spunky runaway apprentice who became, during his 84-year life, America's best writer, inventor, media baron, scientist, diplomat, and business strategist, as well as one of its most practical and ingenious political leaders. He explores the wit behind Poor Richard's Almanac and the wisdom behind the Declaration of Independence, the new nation's alliance with France, the treaty that ended the Revolution, and the compromises that created a near-perfect Constitution.
Above all, Isaacson shows how Franklin's unwavering faith in the wisdom of the common citizen and his instinctive appreciation for the possibilities of democracy helped to forge an American national identity based on the virtues and values of its middle class.
In this biography, former CNN chairman Isaacson shows the many facets and incredibly prodigious activity of the Founding Father who was also an inventor, printer, diplomat, businessman, community organizer, and author of an important autobiography. He portrays Franklin as a practical man who championed and embodied middle class values, and who was himself the model for a new kind of American. A New York Times Notable Book for 2003.
"In truth, Mr. Isaacson's book does not add enormously to the sum of our knowledge. But his clear prose and media savvy may bring in readers who have not ventured into the 18th century before....Mr. Isaacson has done plenty of research....He has also brought back the humor missing from the more academic tomes....[This] ambitious new study signals an important effort to bring Franklin back into focus. A new generation of readers needs to know more about the Founder who most appealingly embodies our great resourcefulness as a people--and more than a few of our weaknesses, too." - Ted Widmer 06/30/2003 New York Times Book Review
"[A] thoroughly researched, crisply written, convincingly argued chronicle that is also studded with little nuggets of fresh information." - Joseph J. Ellis 07/06/2003 Nation
"Transcends the limits of conventional hagiography....Isaacson has written a book whose research and writing would do credit to a professional historian. Isaacson's vivid and readable narrative gives a clear account of Franklin's scientific work, his extraordinary career as a social innovator, of his labors as a diplomat and statesman, and of the vagaries of his love life." - Robin Blackburn 07/14/2003