The Political Philosophy of Benjamin Franklin

Front Cover
JHU Press, Aug 23, 2007 - History - 277 pages
0 Reviews

The most famous man of his age, Benjamin Franklin was an individual of many talents and accomplishments. He invented the wood-burning stove and the lightning rod, he wrote Poor Richard's Almanac and The Way to Wealth, and he traveled the world as a diplomat. But it was in politics that Franklin made his greatest impact.

Franklin’s political writings are full of fascinating reflections on human nature, on the character of good leadership, and on why government is such a messy and problematic business. Drawing together threads in Franklin's writings, Lorraine Smith Pangle illuminates his thoughts on citizenship, federalism, constitutional government, the role of civil associations, and religious freedom.

Of the American Founders, Franklin had an unrivaled understanding of the individual human soul. At the heart of his political vision is a view of democratic citizenship, a rich understanding of the qualities of the heart and mind necessary to support liberty and sustain happiness.

This concise introduction reflects Franklin's valuable insight into political issues that continue to be relevant today.

 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

Introduction
1
Franklin Socrates and Modern Rationalism
11
The Virtuous Citizen
49
J Philanthropy and Civil Associations
91
Thoughts on Government
127
The Ultimate Questions
185
Notes
225
Recommended Readings
263
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2007)

Lorraine Smith Pangle is an associate professor of government at the University of Texas at Austin. She is the author of Aristotle and the Philosophy of Friendship and The Learning of Liberty: The Educational Ideas of the American Founders.