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The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin de…
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The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin (2004)

de Gordon S. Wood

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1,0212015,438 (3.86)16
Ten years in the making, the new book from Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Gordon S. Wood reveals Benjamin Franklin's life and meaning. Why did Benjamin Franklin retire from business and become gentleman? Why did he admire the British Empire--and join the American Revolution? Why did he being writing his Autobiography when he did? And how did the "first American" become an American in the first place? Renowned historian Gordon S. Wood spent ten years studying a legend. In this untraditional biography, he penetrates beneath 200 years' accumulation of images and representations to find the historical Franklin. He places his subject's amazing life in its 18th century context an shatters forever the comforting stereotypes: homespun patriot, cracker-barrel philosopher, folksy founder, genial self-improver. Groundbreaking and riveting, this book is a must for anyone interested in American history and the roots of American character.… (mais)
Membro:HamletInExile6
Título:The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin
Autores:Gordon S. Wood
Informação:Publisher Unknown, Kindle Edition, 320 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
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Etiquetas:to-read

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The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin de Gordon S. Wood (2004)

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A brief, engaging look look at Franklin- both his life, and the creation of his legends ( )
  poirotketchup | Mar 18, 2021 |
Gordon Wood is really one of my favorite historians. What I think he does particularly well is to put the American revolution in the context of wider worldwide events and intellectual movements. The revolution for Wood is not in isolation but to be understood in wider circles of Enlightenment philosophy, European rivalry, as well as post-revolutionary needs for symbols. I'm not a fan of blatant revisionism for revisionism's sake, but I think Wood's original and creative ways of interpreting history adds to our understanding in a solid way. In his book about Benjamin Franklin he seriously challenges the myths that have grown up around the founding father. He's done a great job of both bebunking or at least qualifying some of the mythical characteristics as well as explaining how and why these myths arose in the first place. Wood really tries to dig into how Franklin felt and his ideologies, which are complex and dynamic; this makes the book somewhat speculative at points, but I think that's the nature of historical scholarship. The biography is structured well, focusing on some key moments rather than Franklin's entire life and written in a clear simple matter. One of Wood's greatest strengths is to express complicated ideas in simple language and make academica more accessible to all. A great short read for anyone interested in American history. ( )
  vhl219 | Jun 1, 2019 |
Over the past two months I have been reading two biographies about Benjamin Franklin. The biography written by Walter Isaacson is massive and aims for completeness. It describes every step in Franklin's life in meticulous detail. Hence, the amount of information is overwhelming and the whole is rather stodgy. Isaacson is the chief editor of CNN. Good scholarship, but obviously no vision.

The other biography focuses on one aspect of Benjamin Franklin, namely how he became the icon of America. The writing style of this book is much freer, much more enjoyable read. Wood provides a much clearer picture of Franklin, transcending the dusty sources, and doing more justice to other people in Franklin's life, particularly Deborah, his wife, and William, his son. Gordon S. Wood is a professor of history, specialized in the period of the formation of the American republic. His book is a pleasure to read, obviously Wood has a vision.

Obviously, it doesn't harm to read two books about Benjamin Franklin. ( )
  edwinbcn | Nov 13, 2018 |
An interesting examination of the changing public image of Benjamin Franklin. Franklin was a loyal advocate of the British Crown until he became convinced that England would not treat the colonies justly. His major contribution to the Revolution was his diplomacy in France, which was underestimated in his lifetime. Wood explains how Franklin's Autobiography contributed to America's image as a land of hard working, self-made men. ( )
  ritaer | Jan 28, 2017 |
A masterpiece of historical biography. Not only does Wood provide a compelling account of Franklin's life, recreating the rich political and social context of the eighteenth century Anglo-American culture, he explains how and why the subsequent layers of mythology have surrounded and distorted Franklin. ( )
  JFBallenger | Aug 13, 2015 |
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Benjamin Franklin has a special place in the hearts and minds of Americans. He is, of course, one of the most preeminent of the founders, those heroic men from the era of wigs and knee breeches. Men as diverse as Henry Cabot Lodge to George Wills have ranked him along with Washington as the greatest of the Founders.
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Ten years in the making, the new book from Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Gordon S. Wood reveals Benjamin Franklin's life and meaning. Why did Benjamin Franklin retire from business and become gentleman? Why did he admire the British Empire--and join the American Revolution? Why did he being writing his Autobiography when he did? And how did the "first American" become an American in the first place? Renowned historian Gordon S. Wood spent ten years studying a legend. In this untraditional biography, he penetrates beneath 200 years' accumulation of images and representations to find the historical Franklin. He places his subject's amazing life in its 18th century context an shatters forever the comforting stereotypes: homespun patriot, cracker-barrel philosopher, folksy founder, genial self-improver. Groundbreaking and riveting, this book is a must for anyone interested in American history and the roots of American character.

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