Benjamin Franklin: An American Life

Benjamin Franklin: An American Life

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During his 84-year life Benjamin Franklin was America's best scientist, inventor, publisher, business strategist, diplomat, and writer. He was also one of its most practical political thinkers. America's first great publicist, he carefully crafted his own persona, portrayed it in public and polished it for posterity. In this riveting new biography Walter Isaacson provides readers with a full portrait of Franklin's public and private life - his loyal but neglected wife, his bastard son with whom he broke over going to war with England, his endless replacement families and his many amorous, but probably unconsummated, liaisons. But this is not just a biography of Benjamin Franklin but rather a fascinating look at American and European political history at that time. Isaacson examines the run up to the Revolutionary war, the intimate relations between Britain, France and the colonies and the decisive events that led to America's independence. Just as David McCullough brought life to the historic figure of John Adams, Isaacson portrays Franklin in the flesh, showing readers how this radical man helped define America's national character and more

Product details

  • Other book format | 560 pages
  • 171.45 x 241.3 x 43.18mm | 929.86g
  • Simon & Schuster Ltd
  • Simon & Schuster International
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 16pp 4-c insert; printed endpapers; rough front
  • 0684807610
  • 9780684807614
  • 224,839

Review quote

"The New York Times" In its common sense, clarity and accessibility, it is a fitting reflection of Franklin's sly pragmatism....This may be the book that most powerfully drives a new pendulum swing of the Franklin more

Table of contents

Contents Chapter One Benjamin Franklin and the Invention of America Chapter Two Pilgrim's Progress: Boston, 1706-1723 Chapter Three Journeyman: Philadelphia and London, 1723-1726 Chapter Four Printer: Philadelphia, 1726-1732 Chapter Five Public Citizen: Philadelphia, 1731-1748 Chapter Six Scientist and Inventor: Philadelphia, 1744-1751 Chapter Seven Politician: Philadelphia, 1749-1756 Chapter Eight Troubled Waters: London, 1757-1762 Chapter Nine Home Leave: Philadelphia, 1763-1764 Chapter Ten Agent Provocateur: London, 1765-1770 Chapter Eleven Rebel: London, 1771-1775 Chapter Twelve Independence: Philadelphia, 1775-1776 Chapter Thirteen Courtier: Paris, 1776-1778 Chapter Fourteen Bon Vivant: Paris, 1778-1785 Chapter Fifteen Peacemaker: Paris, 1778-1785 Chapter Sixteen Sage: Philadelphia, 1785-1790 Chapter Seventeen Epilogue Chapter Eighteen Conclusions Cast of Characters Chronology Currency Conversions Acknowledgments Sources and Abbreviations Notes Indexshow more

About Walter Isaacson

Walter Isaacson, University Professor of History at Tulane, has been CEO of the Aspen Institute, chairman of CNN, and editor of Time magazine. He is the author of Leonardo da Vinci; The Innovators; Steve Jobs; Einstein: His Life and Universe; Benjamin Franklin: An American Life; and Kissinger: A Biography, and the co-author of The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made. He and his wife live in New Orleans. Facebook: Walter Isaacson, Twitter: @WalterIsaacsonshow more

Rating details

67,416 ratings
3.95 out of 5 stars
5 36% (24,560)
4 36% (24,209)
3 19% (12,551)
2 5% (3,220)
1 4% (2,876)
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