Benjamin Franklin and His Gods

Author: Kerry S. Walters
Paper – $27
Publication Date
Paperback: 01/01/1999
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About the Book

Against the religious backdrop of pre- and postcolonial America stands the towering figure--and mind--of Benjamin Franklin. A Renaissance man in a Revolutionary time, Franklin had interests and knowledge not only in religion but in literature, philosophy, politics, publishing, history, and scientific inquiry, among many other disciplines.

Kerry S. Walters examines Franklin's search for the Divine using a similar, multifaceted approach--and in so doing has created the first extended treatment of Franklin's religious thought in thirty years. Walters brings the same intellectual range and depth to the understanding of Franklin's beliefs that Franklin brought to his own quest. What emerges from this pilgrimage into the soul of one of America's greatest figures is a very human Benjamin Franklin who grew with the accumulation of knowledge to arrive at a "theistic perspectivism," which provided him with a philosophical explanation for the diversity of religious faiths--and a justification for the liberty of conscience he advocated throughout his life.

Benjamin Franklin and His Gods is an original and beautifully challenging spiritual and intellectual biography. Destined to be a classic.


"Accomplishes a nearly impossible task. In [Walters'] analysis of Franklin's religious beliefs, he makes sense of what Franklin himself had trouble sorting out. . . . Walters offers an excellent analysis of Franklin's sometimes contradictory writings on religious faith." -- Dan Williams, American Literature