Sunday, December 29, 2013

Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin

This biography/historical text follows the life of Benjamin Franklin's
youngest sister, Jane. In 1712 Jane was born into this large Franklin family residing in Boston. The youngest of 7 sisters and Benny being the youngest of 10 brothers were a matched pair from the beginning. Girls were not educated as were the boys and even then - only the wealthier families were able to do so. But Ben began to teach little Jane all he could and as times wore on, and times were hard, this brother sister pair were the last remaining of their clan and spent the better part of their long lives enjoying correspondence, friendship and loyalty with each other. Ben Franklin, one of the most remarkable Americans since the birth of our nation had in Jane his one link to family, to his past and his true self. He forever bounced his ideas, his writings and philosophies off this self learned sister at a time when women found themselves on the outskirts of education, history and politics. Author Jill Lepore brings to life, in an extremely manageable read, a look into the most precious and private letters between the siblings and a carefully studied glimpse of the American Revolution. Personally, as a lover of books, I found it completely intoxicating to learn the details of how Ben Franklin revolutionized not just our nations politics but the alphabet, the written word, the printing press, magazines, newspapers and libraries. Making reading, the desire and ease to acquire knowledge and express ones freedom through their own writing a part of every persons life. The history of documentation, archiving records and the massive changes that slowly took place for educating women is a fascinating and pleasurable journey through our history.    Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin

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