Einstein and Oppenheimer The Meaning of GeniusBBS

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Albert Einstein and J. Robert Oppenheimer, two iconic scientists of the twentieth century, belonged to different generations, with the boundary marked by the advent of quantum mechanics. By exploring how these men differedΓΓé¼ΓÇ¥in their worldview, in their work, and in their dayΓΓé¼ΓÇ¥this book provides powerful insights into the lives of two critical figures and into the scientific culture of their times. In EinsteinΓΓé¼Γäós and OppenheimerΓΓé¼Γäós philosophical and ethical positions, their views of nuclear weapons, their ethnic and cultural commitments, their opinions on the unification of physics, even the role of Buddhist detachment in their thinking, the book traces the broader issues that have shaped science and the world.
Einstein is invariably seen as a lone and singular genius, while Oppenheimer is generally viewed in a particular scientific, political, and historical context. Silvan Schweber considers the circumstances behind this perception, in EinsteinΓΓé¼Γäós coherent and consistent self-image, and its relation to his singular vision of the world, and in OppenheimerΓΓé¼Γäós contrasting lack of certainty and related non-belief in a unitary, ultimate theory. Of greater importance, perhaps, is the role that timing and chance seem to have played in the two scientistsΓΓé¼Γäó contrasting characters and accomplishmentsΓΓé¼ΓÇ¥with EinsteinΓΓé¼Γäós having the advantage of maturing at a propitious time for theoretical physics, when the Newtonian framework was showing weaknesses.
Bringing to light little-examined aspects of these lives, Schweber expands our understanding of two great figures of twentieth-century physicsΓΓé¼ΓÇ¥but also our sense of what such greatness means, in personal, scientific, and cultural terms.
(20080521)
# Paperback: 432 pages
# Publisher: Harvard University Press (March 30, 2010)
# Language: English
# ISBN-10: 067403452X
# ISBN-13: 978-0674034525 
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