- Also check our best rated Biography reviews
Niels Bohr's Times: In Physics, Philosophy and Polity Hardcover – 3 Oct 1991
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"Pais has written an excellent account ... which will be a standard reference for many years to come" -- THES
'... a book that grips by its clarity and the importance of its subject matter ... remarkably timely.' -- New Scientist
`Pais tells the full story in his usual deeply informative and yet comfortably informal manner...I find it beautifully lucid and convincingly authoritative...This book is a worthy twin to Pais's splendid biography of Einstein.' -- Nature
About the Author
About the Author: Abraham Pais is Detlev W. Bronk Professor of Physics Emeritus at Rockefeller University in New York. He is also the author of 'Subtle is the Lord...' (for which he won an American Book Award) and Inward Bound.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The good news is that this chunky title will give you an in-depth look at Bohr and his work. From his early days in Copenhagen, through his brief but fruitful stay in the UK, his return to Denmark, the rush to safety in the Second World War and his gradual move to elder statesman of quantum physics, it's all here.
As is often the case with a biography written by another scientist, the science content is quite heavy and sometimes not the easiest to digest, but it is worth battling through, and the picture of Bohr himself that comes out of this book is second-to-none. Niels Bohr sometimes gets a rough time of it, in part because his own communication was often rather opaque, but Pais will really open your eyes to Bohr's importance.
The book dates back to 1991 but is none the worse for that. If you really want to understand the development of quantum physics in its historical and scientific context, this should be on your reading list.
Written before the popular Broadway play, "Copenhagen" by Michael Frayn, Pais' book covers the Heisenberg-Bohr meeting in 1941[the real one],--- and there is a lot more! We are fortunate that Pais has given us this, and several other wonderful biographies;-- the one about Albert Einstein stands out! It is especially fortunate that he has chosen to write for the general public. I can't think of anyone who did, or possibly could have done it better. His writing is captivating, and unique in its recreation of the times, and the social context of the scientific events. Pais further succeeds magnificently in bringing to life the many colorful personalities. This includes the young physicists born in Europe around 1900 who arrived in Copenhagen in the 1920ties to work with Bohr, some later to win the Nobel Prize,-- how he became a father figure to some of them,- Heisenberg, for example. And there are the other players,
Albert Einstein early on, and Pais himself later, in the drama of quantum physics of the Twentieth Century. Even if you might perhaps not be scientifically inclined, and if you choose to skip the physics sections, I don't think you will be disappointed.
Reviewed by Palle Jorgensen, August 2003
Some technical stuff for those that are interested, a good historical account of the start of 20th century physics, but most of all a fully deserved biography of a man who most will never ever appreciate existed.
Obviously not of great interest to those who do not have physics as a hobby or profession (unless you really want to explore new territory), but it clearly comes across that some people are more than just experts in their field or an historical landmark of science.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I would recommend it to anyone interested in the history of theoretical physics.
The author had been a friend and colleague of Bohr.