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Benjamin Franklin: Inventing America (Oxford Portraits) Hardcover – September 16, 2004

5 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Editorial Reviews


"Using extensive quotes from Franklins Autobiography, Gaustad provides excellent coverage of the life and times of this Founding Father, presenting a revealing look at his personality, thought processes, views, and place in American history. Extensive coverage is given to Franklins role in the Revolutionary War as a member of the Continental Congress and diplomat to France....Best suited for students more interested in getting the full picture of the lives of these Americans, rather than those looking for a simple accounting of facts." -- School Library Journal

About the Author

Edwin S. Gaustad is a professor of history at the University of California, Riverside. He is a noted church historian and the author of over a dozen books, including The Great Awakening in New England, Dissent in American Religion, and A Religious History of America.

Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 - 17 years
  • Grade Level: 7 - 12
  • Series: Oxford Portraits
  • Hardcover: 143 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (September 16, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019515732X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195157321
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 0.5 x 6.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,055,928 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By Dr. James A. Glasscock on January 25, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Edwin Gaustad, a marvelous historian, has produced a surprising set of facts about Franklin and his life. This tiny book is filled with stories and events that are often obscured in larger works, or at least, in my experience.
I wish older elementary and middle school and even high school students were required to read this book in the Oxford Portrait series of other major American Founders.
As with many of the Founders, Franklin was a creative man, a risk taker in business and industry, taught himself as an apprentice the art of printing, a newspaper publisher, and more. The fact that he left home at 17 speaks of his early - though not unusual - maturity of the age, and his eager willingness to accept responsibility is a model today.
He taught himself subjects that today are required in public education and rightly earned the right to be called a major figure in American history, as a result of his keen intellect and powers of observation.
For example, if one reads "Poor Richard's Almanac," one understands the wisdom of the man, based on careful observations that are timeless.
I find the little work satisfying, informative, and readable in an age of ponderous and pompous prose and oversize writing that makes many books the equivalent of a formidable doorstop.
Gaustad is fine writer, writer who writes with clarity and understanding insight.
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