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Download The Age of Edison: Electric Light and the Invention of Modern America Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample The Age of Edison: Electric Light and the Invention of Modern America (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Ernest Freeberg
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (57 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ernest Freeberg Narrator: Sean Pratt Publisher: Gildan Media LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2013 ISBN:
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The late 19th century was a period of explosive technological creativity, but arguably the most important invention of all was Thomas Edison's incandescent light bulb. Unveiled in his Menlo Park, New Jersey, laboratory in 1879, the light bulb overwhelmed the American public with the sense of the birth of a new age. More than any other invention, the electric light marked the arrival of modernity.

The light bulb became a catalyst for the nation's transformation from a rural to an urban-dominated culture. City streetlights defined zones between rich and poor, and the electrical grid sharpened the line between town and country. Bright lights meant big city. Like moths to a flame, millions of Americans migrated to urban centers in these decades, leaving behind the shadow of candle and kerosene lamp in favor of the exciting brilliance of the urban streetscape.

The Age of Edison places the story of Edison's invention in the context of a technological revolution that transformed America and Europe in these decades. Edison and his fellow inventors emerged from a culture shaped by broad public education, a lively popular press that took an interest in science and technology, and an American patent system that encouraged innovation and democratized the benefits of invention. And in the end, as Freeberg shows, Edison's greatest invention was not any single technology, but rather his reinvention of the process itself. At Menlo Park he gathered the combination of capital, scientific training, and engineering skill that would evolve into the modern research and development laboratory. His revolutionary electrical grid not only broke the stronghold of gas companies, but also ushered in an era when strong, clear light could become accessible to everyone.

In The Age of Edison, Freeberg weaves a narrative that reaches from Coney Island and Broadway to the tiniest towns of rural America, tracing the progress of electric light through ... Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Phil | 12/11/2013

    " some interesting stuff I didn't know. Light bulb changed things way more than we think "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew | 10/13/2013

    " Fascinating history, but I would've liked more of the Edison-Tesla rivalry "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Neena | 10/7/2013

    " could have been better but it was good "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 David Chivers | 10/4/2013

    " Only an okay read, Interesting info, but a writing style that is repetitive and not particularly engaging. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Peter Mcloughlin | 9/16/2013

    " Kind of interesting. It is about how electrification and having a cheap source of illumination following edison changed americans work, leisure,made cities safer and changed their habits. It has some points of interest about the story of electrification and has some information. It is ok. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 James Mogey | 8/10/2013

    " Enjoyed it. Too little on Tesla however. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Diane | 6/8/2013

    " After watching the 5 part documentary "The men who built America" (which was great), this book fit right in with what has become a personal fascination with the industrialization and growth of America's economy, infrastructure and place in the modern world. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Steve O | 5/28/2013

    " Pleasant history on how the electric light helped change the way we live. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jbondandrews | 3/16/2013

    " An interesting book of the history of electricity of the US. "

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About the Author

Ernest Freeberg is a distinguished professor of humanities in the history department at the University of Tennessee. He is the author of The Education of Laura Bridgman and Democracy’s Prisoner, which was a Los Angeles Times Book Prize finalist and winner of the David J. Langum, Sr. Prize in American Legal History. Freeberg is a distinguished lecturer for the Organization of American Historians and has produced a number of public radio documentaries on historical themes.