Benjamin Franklin's writings represent a long career of literary, scientific, and political efforts over a lifetime which extended nearly the entire eighteenth century. Franklin's achievements range from inventing the lightning rod to publishing Poor Richard's Almanac to signing the Declaration of Independence. In his own lifetime he knew prominence not only in America, but in Britain and France as well. This volume includes Franklin's reflections on such diverse questions as philosophy and religion, social status, electricity, American national characters, war, and the status of women. Also included is a new transcription of the 1726 journal, and several pieces which have recently been identified as Franklin's own work.