Chapter

. The Franklin Phenomenon

Michael Brian Schiffer

in Draw the Lightning Down

Published by University of California Press

Published in print October 2003 | ISBN: 9780520238022
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520939851 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520238022.003.0001
. The Franklin Phenomenon

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This book reports the findings that have been woven around the significant contributions of Benjamin Franklin and his friends. To underscore the diversity of the people who created the first electrical technologies, it furnishes throughout a number of brief biographies. The book also considers a few key ideas and terms, beginning with technology. The chapters included in it show that electrical technologies in the eighteenth century participated in many activities: scientific, political, educational, medical, and recreational. They also illustrate that Franklin, adhering to his various virtues, did not allow a latent scientific passion to take command of his life until he reached middle age. By then—the late 1740s—other workers had already begun to cultivate the fertile field of electrophysics. Finally, an overview of the chapters included in the book is presented.

Keywords: Benjamin Franklin; electrical technologies; electrophysics; scientific activity; political activity; educational activity; medical activity; recreational activity

Chapter.  3802 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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