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The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin

by Gordon S. Wood

ISBN 0143035282 / 9780143035282 / 0-14-303528-2
Publisher Penguin Books
Language English
Edition Softcover
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Book summary

From the most respected chronicler of the early days of the Republicand winner of both the Pulitzer and Bancroft prizescomes 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 complexand much more interesting. Charting the passage of Franklins 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 countrys idea of itself.