The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin by Gordon S. Wood

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Synopsis

From the most respected chronicler of the early days of the Republic—and winner of both the Pulitzer and Bancroft prizes—comes a landmark work that rescues Benjamin Franklin from a mythology that has blinded generations of Americans to the man he really was and makes sense of aspects of his life and career that would have otherwise remained mysterious. In place of the genial polymath, self-improver, and quintessential American, Gordon S. Wood reveals a figure much more ambiguous and complex—and much more interesting. Charting the passage of Franklin’s life and reputation from relative popular indifference (his death, while the occasion for mass mourning in France, was widely ignored in America) to posthumous glory, The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin sheds invaluable light on the emergence of our country’s idea of itself.


 

About Gordon S. Wood

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GORDON S. WOOD is the Alva O. Way University Professor and a professor of history at Brown University. His 1969 book, The Creation of the American Republic 1776-1787, received the Bancroft and John H. Dunning prizes and was nominated for the National Book Award. His 1992 book, The Radicalism of the American Revolution, won the Pulitzer Prize and the Emerson Prize. His most recent book, Empire of Liberty, won the 2010 New-York Historical Society Prize in American History. Wood contributes regularly to The New Republic and The New York Review of Books.
 
Published May 31, 2005 by Penguin Books. 320 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin

Publishers Weekly

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Eminent revolutionary historian Wood illuminates the life and times of perhaps our nation's most symbolic yet enigmatic forefather. Born of modest roots, Benjamin Franklin displayed from an ear

Mar 22 2004 | Read Full Review of The Americanization of Benjam...

Publishers Weekly

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Wood, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1993 for The Radicalism of the American Revolution , shows how Franklin's skills and charm enabled him to complete the remarkable transition from humble beginnings to gentlemanly status, occupying his later years with scientific experiments, philosophy and states...

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Bookmarks Magazine

We all know Benjamin Franklin: Founding Father, creator of Poor Richard’s Almanack, inventor of pithy sayings and the kite-flying electricity experiment.

Oct 21 2009 | Read Full Review of The Americanization of Benjam...

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