Reading Questions: Franklin
Look over the following reading questions BEFORE reading the assignment in order to get a sense of what the instructor wants you to find. Then, after finishing the reading assignment, come to class ready to discuss these and any other issues that may arise.
- Benjamin Franklin became the standard of success that future
Americans were judged upon. What about Franklin's story makes
him a success? After all, he was a runaway, he was a irresponsible
in London, he had some bad partners, etc. So what is there about
Franklin's story that makes it so encouraging to so many people.
- Identify the errata in Franklins life/story that you think
are important in creating Franklin's identity. What is the errata
and what did Franklin learn from it?
- Based on what we get from Franklin's story, how did the apprentice
system work in America for learning a trade?
- Why exactly does Franklin leave his brother's employment?
- What does Franklin do to convince the people of Philadelphia
that he is a hard-working good citizen? Is the image that the
people of Philadelphia have of Franklin true, or is it just that:
an image, not reality?
- Identify the tone shift that occurs between the first and
section "books" of Franklin's autobiography and explain
why that shift occurs.
- Why is there so little mention of Franklin's wife and family
in this autobiography?