Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin Franklin

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  • EAN: 9788829565351

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The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin is the traditional name for the unfinished record of his own life written by Benjamin Franklin from 1771 to 1790; however, Franklin himself appears to have called the work his Memoirs. Although it had a tortuous publication history after Franklin's death, this work has become one of the most famous and influential examples of an autobiography ever written.

Franklin's account of his life is divided into four parts, reflecting the different periods at which he wrote them. There are actual breaks in the narrative between the first three parts, but Part Three's narrative continues into Part Four without an authorial break (only an editorial one).

In the "Introduction" of the 1916 publication of the Autobiography, editor F. W. Pine wrote that Franklin's biography provided the "most remarkable of all the remarkable histories of our self-made men" with Franklin as the greatest exemplar.

Part One of the Autobiography is addressed to Franklin's son William, at that time (1771) Royal Governor of New Jersey. While in England at the estate of the Bishop of St Asaph in Twyford, Franklin, now 65 years old, begins by saying that it may be agreeable to his son to know some of the incidents of his father's life; so with a week's uninterrupted leisure, he is beginning to write them down for William. He starts with some anecdotes of his grandfather, uncles, father and mother. He deals with his childhood, his fondness for reading, and his service as an apprentice to his brother James Franklin, a Boston printer and the publisher of the New England Courant. After improving his writing skills through study of the Spectator by Joseph Addison and Sir Richard Steele, he writes an anonymous paper and slips it under the door of the printing house by night. Not knowing its author, James and his friends praise the paper and it is published in the Courant, which encourages Ben to produce more essays (the "Silence Dogood" essays) which are also published. When Ben reveals his authorship, James is angered, thinking the recognition of his papers will make Ben too vain. James and Ben have frequent disputes and Ben seeks for a way to escape from working under James.

 
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  • Benjamin Franklin Cover

    (Boston 1706 - Filadelfia 1790) uomo politico, scienziato e scrittore angloamericano. Lavorò fin da ragazzo come tipografo; dal 1728 ebbe, a Filadelfia, una stamperia propria dove pubblicò annualmente (1732-58) l’Almanacco di Riccardo brav’uomo (Poor Richard’s almanac), raccolta di aforismi di derivazione popolare e di utilitaristica saggezza. F. coltivò una vastissima gamma di interessi: fondò giornali e accademie, fu ambasciatore a Londra e a Parigi, si dedicò all’invenzione e alla sperimentazione scientifica ideando, fra l’altro, la stufa che porta il suo nome, il parafulmine, le lenti bifocali. Tutti i suoi saggi, nonostante la varietà e i fini pratici degli argomenti, sono modelli di prosa letteraria per vigore e chiarezza di stile. F. (che contribuì a stendere la Dichiarazione d’indipendenza... Approfondisci
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