Reasons why benjamin franklin represent the american enlightenment

It is very muddled, particularly towards the end. It was not written in a continuous stretch, but rather pasted together out of separate fragments that were written years apart from one another; often, the author could not remember what he had even written in the previous sections.

Reasons why benjamin franklin represent the american enlightenment

Each month during this year, the newsletter will look at a person whose creative genius was at full flood years ago. First, Franklin was a man who lived wholly within the eighteenth-century Enlightenment, born in and dying in Then, too, Franklin was a child of America, "the nation of the Enlightenment.

As a result, he had a much greater appreciation for the importance of civil society than did the plantation owners of Virginia, and he took an active part in creating local civic institutions. Its first volume of Transactions stated: Knowledge is of little use, when confined to mere speculation: But when speculative truths are reduced to practice, when theories grounded upon experiments, are applied to common purposes of life; and when, by these, agriculture is improved, trade enlarged, the arts of living made more easy and comfortable, and, of course, the increase and happiness of mankind promoted; knowledge then becomes really useful.

This is precisely the spirit of rational productiveness that our Year celebration intends to honor. But that misperception arises because the significance of the last-named "gadget" has not been properly appreciated.

I refer here to the lightning rod. Franklin began his research because he wanted to learn about the operations of nature, and he had no idea where that research would lead.

Well into the nineteenth century the lightning rod was cited as the premier example of the way in which fundamental scientific advances may produce practical inventions. Norton and Company, ] p. Still, in two important senses, Franklin was a tinkerer. First, he was able to produce many of the devices that he required for his experiments.

His rival in electrical studies, William Watson of London, wrote that Franklin had both "a head to conceive" and "a hand to carry into execution" whatever he thought might "conduce to enlighten the subject-matter. The next step in the science of electricity illustrates the ways in which theory and technology reinforce each other.

For the next step was to create a device capable of producing larger amounts of electricity for use in experimentation.

SparkNotes: The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin: Analysis

This was the Leyden jar, so-called because it was invented in by Pieter van Musschenbroekwho worked at the University of Leyden. Before Franklin, the workings of the Leyden jar were not understood, only the result: The demonstration of this device fascinated Europe in the s. Birds and small animals were killed by the shocks produced from Leyden jars.

Watson sent a pulse of electricity through a wire strung across the River Thames.

Benjamin Franklin is widely considered on of the greatest thinkers in American history; and, like many of the other great Enlightenment philosophers, contributed to the new waves of thinking on many different levels, and he reflected the new ideas and ideologies of the Enlightenment in Europe onto the newly formed United States. In order to approach this topic and to properly compare and contrast Jonathan Edwards and Benjamin Franklin, let us first establish some of the main principles of the two camps they represent. Benjamin Franklin FRS FRSE (January 17, [O.S. January 6, ] – April 17, ) was an American polymath and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. Franklin was a leading author, printer, political theorist, politician, freemason, postmaster, scientist, inventor, humorist, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat.

He also used iron wire to connect a line of Cathusian monks more than half a mile long; when the Leyden jar was discharged into the wire, it is said, the white-robed monks jumped in the air simultaneously. Here is where matters stood when the subject of electricity came to the attention of Benjamin Franklin.

He had very little formal education and was apprenticed at age 12 to his brother James, who was a printer.

Reasons why benjamin franklin represent the american enlightenment

For the next five years, he read continuously and taught himself to write well. When his brother got into trouble with the authorities, Benjamin found an opportunity to violate his indenture without being brought to law.

After working briefly as a printer in Philadelphia and then London, Franklin returned to the former city and set up a successful printing partnership. Inadopting a scheme begun by Cotton Mather in Massachusetts, Franklin organized the Leather Apron club, or Junto, to debate questions of morals, politics, and science.

Inhe began The Pennsylvania Gazette, generally acknowledged to be the best of the colonial newspapers. Inhe successfully promoted a fire company for Philadelphia. From untilhe was clerk of the Pennsylvania legislature, and from tohe was postmaster of Philadelphia. Inhe launched the American Philosophical Society for Useful Knowledge by calling for "constant correspondence" of men with scientific interests throughout the colonies and by offering to serve as secretary of the APS.

Unfortunately, Franklin is not generally perceived as a scientist but as a tinkerer.

American Enlightenment Thought | Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Franklin enunciated the scientific principles on which the stove operated, described the method by which mechanics could construct it, listed fourteen advantages that it offered, and answered all the objections that had been raised against it.A Man of Many Talents.

Amongst the pantheon of American heroes who led the young 13 colonies into nationhood during the latter part of the s, few stand taller than Benjamin Franklin. Why Franklin? Benjamin Franklin is the ideal person to lead off The Atlas Society''s Year celebration, for many reasons.

First, Franklin was a man who lived wholly within the eighteenth-century Enlightenment, born in and dying in A summary of Analysis in Benjamin Franklin's The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.

Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin and what it means. Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans.

As American self consciousness and the Franklin Myth grew up together, they influenced each other to such an extent that Benjamin Franklin has, for most of American history, been considered the “archetypical American,” which is striking when Franklin’s life is compared to other Founding Fathers such as Washington and Jefferson.

In order to approach this topic and to properly compare and contrast Jonathan Edwards and Benjamin Franklin, let us first establish some of the main principles of the two camps they represent. Benjamin Franklin, along with George Washington, is the best known of America’s Founding Fathers.

Franklin was born into a poor Boston family in At age 12, he became an apprentice to one of his brothers, who was a printer.

American Enlightenment Thought | Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy