The Nine Lives of Benjamin Franklin with Dr. Richard Bell

The Nine Lives of Benjamin Franklin with Dr. Richard Bell


Regular price $36.50 Save $-36.50
/

Loading...
Only -106 items in stock!
No events are scheduled at this time. Want to be notified when it’s back? Leave your email address and we’ll notify you.
Want to book this event privately? Send us an inquiry.
Something went wrong while submitting your request, please try again later.
Your request has been sent, you'll be notified of future dates.

Benjamin Franklin's genius is a puzzle. Despite having only two years of formal schooling, he would end up receiving honorary degrees from Harvard, Yale, Oxford, and St. Andrews, as well as the 18th century’s equivalent of a Nobel Prize for Physics.

Like his hero, Isaac Newton, Franklin was driven by a perpetual dissatisfaction with the world as he knew it. He optimized, tinkered, and improved. Hardly the tortured genius, he took a schoolboy's pleasure in everything he made. Experimenting was a constant source of beauty, pleasure, and amusement for him, even when things went wrong (which they did all the time).

In this Conversation historian, Richard Bell will examine many of Franklin's ideas to make life simpler, cheaper, and easier for himself and everyone else. We’ll learn how his ideas encompassed not only natural science and engineering—the kite experiments and the bifocals for which he is justly remembered—but also all sorts of public works, civic improvements, political innovation, and fresh new business ideas. We’ll discuss his experimenter's instinct, his relentless drive to build a better world one small piece at a time, even encompassed innovations in medical device design, in music, in cookery, and in ventriloquism. Participants will emerge with a much deeper understanding of this intriguing character beyond what meets the eye.

Richard Bell is Professor of History at the University of Maryland and author of the new book Stolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and their Astonishing Odyssey Home which is shortlisted for the George Washington Prize and the Harriet Tubman Prize. He has held major research fellowships at Yale, Cambridge, and the Library of Congress and is the recipient of the National Endowment of the Humanities Public Scholar award. He serves as a Trustee of the Maryland Center for History and Culture, as an elected member of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts, and as a fellow of the Royal Historical Society.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 20 reviews
95%
(19)
5%
(1)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
A
A.

The content was excellent and Dr Bell is an engaging speaker/ lecturer. I will sign up for more of his talks. However, the self promotion and introductions of the participants were unnecessary and time consuming.

K
K.W.
Entertaining, fascinating picture of the many talents of Benjamin Franklin

Dr. Bell gives an excellent , enjoyable talk about the many talents and achievements of an interesting historical figure.

L
L.A.

Engaging, content rich and entertaining.

C
C.F.
Subject Requires More Than 90 Minutes

Dr. Bell is an expert in his field and an engaging teacher. He makes engaging his students a priority.

j
j.s.
don't understand this question

Excellent. stimulating. exciting. very informative. Richard Bell
has a way with words. He is creative, funny, and intelligent. I intend to register for every context conversation and /or seminar he plans.

Customer Reviews

Based on 20 reviews
95%
(19)
5%
(1)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
A
A.

The content was excellent and Dr Bell is an engaging speaker/ lecturer. I will sign up for more of his talks. However, the self promotion and introductions of the participants were unnecessary and time consuming.

K
K.W.
Entertaining, fascinating picture of the many talents of Benjamin Franklin

Dr. Bell gives an excellent , enjoyable talk about the many talents and achievements of an interesting historical figure.

L
L.A.

Engaging, content rich and entertaining.

C
C.F.
Subject Requires More Than 90 Minutes

Dr. Bell is an expert in his field and an engaging teacher. He makes engaging his students a priority.

j
j.s.
don't understand this question

Excellent. stimulating. exciting. very informative. Richard Bell
has a way with words. He is creative, funny, and intelligent. I intend to register for every context conversation and /or seminar he plans.