Quantum: Einstein, Bohr, and the Great Debate about the Nature of Reality

By Manjit Kumar
Read by Ray Porter

14.37 Hours 07/14/2010 unabridged
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Quantum theory is weird. As Niels Bohr said, if you aren’t shocked by quantum theory, you don’t really understand it. For most people, quantum theory is synonymous with mysterious, impenetrable science. And in fact for many years it was equally baffling for scientists themselves. In this tour de force of science history, Manjit Kumar gives a dramatic and superbly written account of this fundamental scientific revolution, focusing on the central conflict between Einstein and Bohr over the nature of reality and the soul of science. This revelatory book takes a close look at the golden age of physics, the brilliant young minds at its core, and how an idea ignited the greatest intellectual debate of the twentieth century.

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Summary

Summary

Quantum theory is weird. As Niels Bohr said, if you aren’t shocked by quantum theory, you don’t really understand it. For most people, quantum theory is synonymous with mysterious, impenetrable science. And in fact for many years it was equally baffling for scientists themselves. In this tour de force of science history, Manjit Kumar gives a dramatic and superbly written account of this fundamental scientific revolution, focusing on the central conflict between Einstein and Bohr over the nature of reality and the soul of science. This revelatory book takes a close look at the golden age of physics, the brilliant young minds at its core, and how an idea ignited the greatest intellectual debate of the twentieth century.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“As a fairly innumerate non-scientist, I am perversely drawn to books about math and science and usually abandon them with ignorance intact. However, Quantum by Manjit Kumar…is so well written that I now feel I’ve more or less got particle physics sussed. Quantum transcends genre—it is historical, scientific, biographical, philosophical.” Guardian (London)
“A super-collider of a book, shaking together an exotic cocktail of free-thinking physicists, tracing their chaotic interactions and seeing what God-particles and black holes fly up out of the maelstrom…Provides probably the most lucid and detailed intellectual history ever written of a body of theory that makes other scientific revolutions look limp-wristed by comparison.” Independent (London)
“Kumar is an accomplished writer who knows how to separate the excitement of the chase from the sometimes impenetrable mathematics.” Financial Times
“With vigor and elegance, Kumar describes the ‘clash of titans’ that took place in the world of physics in the early twentieth century.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“A wonderful experience for lovers of physics. In this audiobook, complicated scientific theorems and, at times, almost mind-bendingly complex discussions regarding elements, atomic weights, experiments, and chains of formulae are easily dealt with by Ray Porter, who demonstrates a relaxed familiarity with technical matter. Porter re-creates the lives and times of the great scientists Albert Einstein, Niels Bohr, Marie Curie, and Ernest Rutherford, among others…Quantum offers almost 15 hours of solid science for devotees of the subatomic world.” AudioFile

Reviews

Reviews

by Rae 11/17/2017
Overall Performance
Narration
Story

A well researched history of the development of quantum mechanics.

An equally fascinating feature of this book is its description of the work that led to an understanding of what atoms are and why there is a periodic table of the elements.

Author

Author Bio: Manjit Kumar

Manjit Kumar was the founding editor of Prometheus, an arts and sciences journal. He has written and reviewed for various publications, including the Guardian, and is a consulting science editor at Wired UK. He lives in London.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction
Runtime: 14.37
Audience: Adult
Language: English