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Fart Proudly: Writings of Benjamin Franklin You Never Read in School Paperback – March 31, 2003
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About the Author
Carl Japikse is an author, editor, and teacher who lives with his wife Rose in the north Georgia mountains. He is best known for his books of humor and the development of the mind.
Top Customer Reviews
This very small book is a collection of the satire of Ben Franklin. Those of you looking for a good book of fart jokes will be deeply disappointed. Those looking for a good laugh will not be. Those looking to learn more about Ben Franklin will learn a great deal.
A few must-reads are "Rules on Making Oneself Disagreeable" (though farting is not mentioned), "On choosing a Mistress" (again, no farting, but it's hilarious), and the best of all "A Letter to a Royal Academy" in which Franklin makes a suggestion to a group of scientists: throw away all your abstract theory and find a way to make farts smell nice. It is the most subtle and disparaging piece I've ever read, and it rides that line between "is he SERIOUS?!?" and "is this is a joke!??!"
There are actually historically important pieces in this book, believe it or not. Don't let the title throw you. "Rules by Which a Great Empire May Be Reduced" is cutting satire from right before the American revolution. It ran in papers of the time and made an impact. "The Speech of Miss Polly Baker," about a woman having children out of wedlock, was reported as fact throughout the colonies until Franklin admitted the joke.
And finally, for those looking for good fart humor, there's "The Dream" from which the book takes its title. Read and giggle 'till you cough.
Something the book does not mention is that many of these pieces were originally published anonymously, as was the custom in the 18th century.Read more ›
One caveat: There is a closing piece written by Mr. Japikse entitled "The Dream" in which he injects his own political agenda into Mr. Franklin's mouth. In this piece I feel he has exceeded his calling to Fart Proudly and has soiled himself leaving us with a small pile of excrement. Be careful that it doesn't stick to your shoe.
Every schoolteacher in every elementary school history classroom across America - or the world - should have multiple copies of this book freely available at all times. There's a reason Ben was a hero in other countries besides the states.
That said, the preface sucked. Using Ben to push your own politics? Get over it. I agree, but I dislike being told what to think.
So - definitely buy the book, definitely skip the preface, definitely laugh your musical behind off.
However the book was ruined at the end by the editor's own political agenda. He assumes to many things and discredits his own opinion about the freedom of speech (if it is true that no one is allowed to speak their mind or are afraid - how is it that you got published).
My recommendation is to rip out that section of the book and enjoy what a gifted writer and thinker has to say - Ben Franklin
Franklin was one of the first printers in the US - he was a material supporter of freedom of the press, and a severe critic of irresponsible press. He was a statesman and clown, when clowning made his point the best way. He was a politician, scientist, and bawd - how else to take in so much of the human condition?
This collection captures some of the contradictions that comprised Benjamin Frnaklin. Maybe it takes some of the sheen off the gold star that history dumped on him, but it adds toughness and flexibility to the steel that he showed as diplomat. Satire is a voice, and this short book shows a few octaves of his.
I have to admit that poor teachers put me quite off American history. Books like this get me reading history again. It shows Franklin the patriot and firebrand defending the mothers without husbands and deflating the learned academies of Europe. This is short but sweet, and even his choices of words show me a lot about how modern English is used.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Wonderful publication which reveals the satirical side of Mr. Franklin - a must read.Published 14 days ago by Susan J Grandma
Great fun. The stuff Ben Franklin wrote that your prudish schoolteachers hid from you. I give it as a Bar Mitzvah present.Published 1 month ago by David Grant
not well written, but served it's purpose for my writing researchPublished 1 month ago by The Goose is OUT
I had to keep reminding myself to read the date at the top of the essay, as his wisdom still applies today! Read morePublished 2 months ago by tom