Silence Dogood: Essay 8

      Benjamin Franklin wrote Essay 8 under the pseudonym Silence Dogood in July of 1722. This essay was a letter for the Author of the “New-England Courant”, to put in his newspaper,in which Benjamin Franklin quotes an article previously printed in the “London Journal”. In this essay Silence Dogood writes about freedom of speech as well as freedom of the press for printers.

      Silence discusses the benefits of freedom of speech by stating that “Without freedom of thought there can be no such thing as wisdom”. Freedom of thought fosters the growth of intelligence in mankind through free speech and by taking the freedom away the world is left unchanged and non evolving. Although freedom of speech is beneficial there must be limits put in place so that no person is left offended or hurt by another. Freedom of speech is essential in a nation so the citizens within have a say in the government so that they can be governed in a fair and free way. Benjamin Franklin speaks of King Charles the Fifth and his decree banning freedom of speech and creating complete opacity in the government by doing so. When a freedom is taken away by the government the citizens begin to rebel, especially when ban takes away the translucency of the government. The government is essentially dealing with “the interests and affairs of the people” and when the citizens are taken out of the government tyranny takes over and creates a non working nation. High ranking officials take away freedoms so they can have complete control over their citizens and because “Only the wicked governors of men dread what is said of them”.

      When a nation is governed with the citizens and equality in mind as well as taking in the suggestions of the people then the nation is able to prosper and live in peace. It is best to represent “public measures truly when they are honest” because it can benefit the government and the people.  

One thought on “Silence Dogood: Essay 8”

  1. I think this is really well done! You did a good job relaying Franklin’s (or Silence’s) talking points within this essay, while also putting them in the larger perspective of the times. Overall, really solid and clear summary as well as analysis.

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