The Nine Lives of Benjamin Franklin with Dr. Richard Bell - Context Travel

The Nine Lives of Benjamin Franklin with Dr. Richard Bell


Regular price $36.50 Save $-36.50
/

Only -147 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 27 reviews
93%
(25)
4%
(1)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
4%
(1)
S
S.K.
Ben Franklin Unplugged

Once again, Professor Bell delivers an interesting and engaging seminar. As an added attraction, Lin-Manual Miranda's unpublished Ode to Ben Franklin!

C
C.B.
Excellent lectures!

One of the great joys of our COVID winter has been discovering all the rich resources available online through virtual lectures and courses, and none has been better than the presentations of Dr. Richard Bell. We have become huge fans of his historical discussions. We have taken his extended courses with One Day University as well as his one-hour lectures there, we have bought his on-disc course through The Teaching Company's Great Courses series, and now we have taken in our first Context Conversation with him. On each platform, we have found Dr. Bell insightful, accessible, witty and wise. We highly recommend his work to history lovers everywhere.

A
A.

Guest did not leave comment

C
C.F.
Outstanding: illuminating, humorous, deeply knowledgable lecture!

He is truly a marvel, brilliant presentation given with humor and true affection for his subject. The depth of his knowledge is truly limitless. His programs are always so informative and his presentation style so engaging and the information indelibly absorbed. It's at least my 4th program with him, and I truly look forward to the next one!

M
M.k.
Review

Guest did not leave comment

Customer Reviews

Based on 27 reviews
93%
(25)
4%
(1)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
4%
(1)
S
S.K.
Ben Franklin Unplugged

Once again, Professor Bell delivers an interesting and engaging seminar. As an added attraction, Lin-Manual Miranda's unpublished Ode to Ben Franklin!

C
C.B.
Excellent lectures!

One of the great joys of our COVID winter has been discovering all the rich resources available online through virtual lectures and courses, and none has been better than the presentations of Dr. Richard Bell. We have become huge fans of his historical discussions. We have taken his extended courses with One Day University as well as his one-hour lectures there, we have bought his on-disc course through The Teaching Company's Great Courses series, and now we have taken in our first Context Conversation with him. On each platform, we have found Dr. Bell insightful, accessible, witty and wise. We highly recommend his work to history lovers everywhere.

A
A.

Guest did not leave comment

C
C.F.
Outstanding: illuminating, humorous, deeply knowledgable lecture!

He is truly a marvel, brilliant presentation given with humor and true affection for his subject. The depth of his knowledge is truly limitless. His programs are always so informative and his presentation style so engaging and the information indelibly absorbed. It's at least my 4th program with him, and I truly look forward to the next one!

M
M.k.
Review

Guest did not leave comment