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The Society for Useful Knowledge : how Benjamin Franklin and friends brought the Enlightenment to America
(Book)

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Published:
New York : Bloomsbury Press, 2013.
Format:
Book
Edition:
First U.S. edition.
Physical Desc:
xiv, 220 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 25 cm.
Status:
Main Library - Adult Non-Fiction
973.26 L9917s
Description

Benjamin Franklin and his contemporaries brought the Enlightenment to America--an intellectual revolution that laid the foundation for the political one that followed. With the "first Drudgery" of settling the American colonies now well and truly past, Franklin announced in 1743, it was high time that the colonists set about improving the lot of humankind through collaborative inquiry. From Franklin's idea emerged the American Philosophical Society, an association hosted in Philadelphia and dedicated to the harnessing of man's intellectual and creative powers for the common good. The animus behind the Society was and is a disarmingly simple one-that the value of knowledge is directly proportional to its utility. This straightforward idea has left a profound mark on American society and culture and on the very idea of America itself-and through America, on the world as a whole.

From celebrated historian of knowledge Jonathan Lyons comes The Society for Useful Knowledge , telling the story of America's coming-of-age through its historic love affair with practical invention, applied science, and self-reliance. Offering fresh, original portraits of figures like Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Rush, and the inimitable, endlessly inventive Franklin, Lyons gives us vital new perspective on the American founding. He illustrates how the movement for useful knowledge is key to understanding the flow of American society and culture from colonial times to our digital present.

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Status
Main Library - Adult Non-Fiction
973.26 L9917s
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Language:
English
ISBN:
9781608195534, 1608195538

Notes

Bibliography
Includes bibliographical references (pages 197-207) and index.
Description
The young Benjamin Franklin sought his fortune on a trip to England, but instead discovered a world of intellectual ferment in the coffeehouses and salons of London. He brought home to Philadelphia the intense hunger for knowledge that buzzed in a Europe where Newton, Bacon and Galileo had made epochal discoveries. With the "first Drudgery" of settling the American colonies now behind them, Franklin announced in 1743, it was high time that the colonists set about improving the lot of humankind through collaborative inquiry. Franklin and a network of kindred American innovators plunged into the task of creating and sharing "useful knowledge." They started a raft of clubs, journals, and scholarly societies, many still thriving today, to harness man's intellectual and creative powers for the common good. And as these New World thinkers began to make their own discoveries about the natural world, new conceptions of the political order were not far behind.--From publisher description.
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Lyons, J. (2013). The Society for Useful Knowledge: how Benjamin Franklin and friends brought the Enlightenment to America. First U.S. edition. New York: Bloomsbury Press.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Lyons, Jonathan. 2013. The Society for Useful Knowledge: How Benjamin Franklin and Friends Brought the Enlightenment to America. New York: Bloomsbury Press.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Lyons, Jonathan, The Society for Useful Knowledge: How Benjamin Franklin and Friends Brought the Enlightenment to America. New York: Bloomsbury Press, 2013.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Lyons, Jonathan. The Society for Useful Knowledge: How Benjamin Franklin and Friends Brought the Enlightenment to America. First U.S. edition. New York: Bloomsbury Press, 2013. Print.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Grouped Work ID:
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