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2018 Classes Without Quizzes: Caroline Winterer, "The Remarkable Genius of Benjamin Franklin"

Is genius the same in all times and places? Join historian Caroline Winterer for a look at Benjamin Franklin’s many amazing inventions—and some tips for deciding whether he’d still be considered a genius today.

About the Speaker

Caroline Winterer, Anthony P. Meier Family Professor of the Humanities and Director, Stanford Humanities Center

A professor of history and, by courtesy, of classics, she  specializes in the exchange of ideas between Europe and the Americas from the Age of Columbus to the Civil War era. One of her favorite classes to teach at Stanford is on the Lewis and Clark Expedition. In 2013, she received the Smithsonian’s American Ingenuity Award for mapping Ben Franklin’s social network. Professor Winterer has also received fellowships from the National Humanities Center, the Mellon Foundation, the Stanford Humanities Center, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The author of four books, her latest work is American Enlightenments: Pursuing Happiness in the Age of Reason (Yale, 2016).

About the Lecture Series

Classes Without Quizzes is organized by the Stanford Alumni Association. Members of the Stanford community are invited to listen to Stanford faculty delve into the humanities, hot topics, practical advice, technology, and more. Whether you'd like to see a favorite professor, learn about the latest groundbreaking research or tour an interesting spot on campus, you'll find something to spark your intellectual curiosity.



Thursday, October 25, 2018. 03:00 PM


Stanford Humanities Center, Levinthal Hall


Stanford Alumni, Stanford Humanties Center


Devin Devine, Event Coordinator, 650.725.1219,


Free and open to the public. After 4 PM, free parking is available in the lot next to the Humanities Center and in Roble Garage, a short walk down Santa Teresa Street.