Essay, Research Paper
Analysis of The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin is a book written by Benjamin Franklin about Benjamin Franklin. When reading through this autobiography it is apparent that he shows a change throughout this book. I saw an aging of Franklin between parts. He also tells of some mistakes he has made but they are few and far between. Franklin will also portray life in the 18th century. I believe that this autobiography of Franklin is not very precise on his encounters but it is very entertaining to read.
Benjamin Franklin shows himself as a printer, a politician, a philosopher and an inventor. He explained how he grew to be successful at each one of his jobs/hobbies. Throughout his life he becomes extremely intelligent, Franklin tells how he has risen to great heights. He believes if the reader follows what he did that they will have equal success as he had.
Franklin begins by writing ?Dear son? and goes on to illustrate what he has been through in his early life. He tells his audience that he learned to read when he was very young. When Franklin turned twelve he apprenticed to his brother James, the printer. Then Franklin goes on how he got into Philadelphia and his encounters there. As he reaches into his later years at part II of his autobiography the reader is to see a slight change in Franklin?s writings, he seemed maturer in his writings. Franklin wrote more of what he came to learn and believed, rather than what he had been doing and where he has been. Franklin has many words of wisdom, like his ?Thirteen Names of Virtues? which
he believes that he must follow to be successful and live a good life. He explains how he can achieve these goals. I believe there is such a difference between parts because of the long period of time between which each were written.
Benjamin Franklin is writing about himself so there is going to be some biases in this book. When he is telling about his apprenticeship to his brother he says, ?I was a great help.? This is on example of Franklin being conceded; maybe Franklin?s brother was a great help to him. He was very young at the time to, so maybe he was a bother to his brother. These are all things a reader can consider when reading his book.
Franklin has some stories to tell about how he got to Philadelphia and what happened there. He said in the book that he wanted to leave his brothers business but he couldn?t find work in Boston so he went to New York where he couldn?t find work either. When he stopped by New York he was guided to Philadelphia by Mr. Bradford another printer. This he mentioned very briefly about himself not finding work in New York. Franklin was very long winded about his trip to Philadelphia and Philadelphia itself. He mentions how he has to walk 50 miles to get a boat that will take him there. His walk was long and tiresome and on the boat he saves a drunk that fell of the boat. Here it shows that the printer, philosopher, politician and inventor he is now also a hero. When Franklin finally arrived at his destination he bought bread because he was hungry. Almost no time later he was walking down the street and saw his future wife. A little after that he found a place to stay and a job with a printer. I find some of this hard to
believe, it doesn?t seem possible for a man to walk into Philadelphia and find all of this in such a short time.
Franklin began working as a printer and he starts to gloat about how he is more advanced in his printer skills as compared to the other printers. Then the Governor of Philadelphia seemed to be in awe at how well he can write for being so young and the governor immediately invited Franklin to visit. These are all examples of how Franklin loved to make himself look good in his writings. On the other hand if a person were going to write about himself or herself, most people would do the same.
I am stuck on whether or not Franklin had portrayed the American life in the 18th century. It is hard to say having not lived at this time but it seems things happened to easily for him. He was a great man of many traits but everywhere he went he had a job or owned a company or was a leader of the people. So if looking for a portrayal of the 18th century life of a highly successful man than I would say you would find that in The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.
In conclusion to The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin I believe this book to be very interesting. The writings are not all accurate but it is a first hand account on one of the greatest men in Pennsylvania and the United States history. If a reader would want a book that just had all facts I would suggest that they get an encyclopedia or a bibliography. But if you want to see the creation of our nation along with the other great accomplishment by Franklin through his eyes then I would suggest they read this book.