Name: Paul Carboni

Email Address: pcarboni@pdsd.org

610-497-6300, ext 2146




Ben Franklin Autobiography Directed Questioning

*Keep in mind our Collins journals about “moral Americans” and “New Year’s Resolutions” as you read and answer these questions.*


Find one or two quotes to answer each question and type them in the right hand column.  After each quote, write 2-3 sentences explaining how this quote answers the question.


1. How does coming to Philadelphia change Ben Franklin’s opinion about being able to change and grow as a person?

2.  Why does Ben Franklin believe a person can be perfected?  Think back to our opening discussions about rationalist thought:  how is Franklin’s positivity a reflection of that?

3.  How does Ben Franklin believe a person can be perfected?

4.  On p. 73 of the text, the paragraph beginning “I made a little book…” down to “Proceeding thus to the last…”:  What does Franklin’s plan reveal about his character?  What are some adjectives that might describe him?  LIST AT LEAST THREE.

5.  What analogy does Franklin use to explain why he does not try to tackle all the virtues at once?  What point is he making?

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Read the Biography of Ben Franklin (left-hand side).  When finished, consider and answer:

·         What parts of Franklin’s personality or character does each piece present?

·         If you had to describe Franklin in three words, after each piece, which words would you choose (you already did this for the autobiography)?

·         Discuss the evidence that the pieces use to support their evaluations of Franklin’s personality.   In at least five sentences, compare/contrast the two.




Writing Resources:

·        Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL)

·        A Quick Tutorial: How to Cite Text