The Story of Science: Einstein Adds a New Dimension
Sometimes it can seem like science just comes fully formed—a textbook can tell us the Milky Way is a galaxy, the Sun is 93 million miles away, or gravity bends light. But such a book often leaves out some of the most interesting stuff about that hard-won knowledge: how anyone ever figured it out, and even why anyone was wondering about it to begin with.
It turns out that those stories—the stories of the how and the why—are some of the most interesting in all of history. Those stories are full of adventure and bravery, boldness and luck, and the discoverers are often those willing to stand up and call false what everyone else believes to be true. At the end of the nineteenth century, for example, Lord Kelvin, one of the time’s preeminent physicists—and the sort of guy who everyone else listens to, just because—declared that all that was left to do in physics was to make more and more precise measurements of the world. Within a couple decades of Kelvin’s pronouncement, Max Planck, Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, and others would show just how wrong he was.
Joy Hakim’s The Story of Science: Einstein Adds a New Dimension culminates with their discoveries: the quantum world, the theory of relativity, and nuclear physics. These discoveries created our modern world, from solar-powered calculators to cell phones to global positioning systems and the atomic bomb, and opened our eyes to the expanding Universe, the Big Bang, and much more.
A science book unlike any other, Einstein Adds a New Dimension pairs a gripping narrative style with informative sidebars; hundreds of charts, maps, and diagrams; suggestions for further reading; and excerpts from the writings of great scientists.
How can such awesome power come from something so small? Read about the road to discovery of the atomic bomb.
Teacher’s and Student’s Quest Guides are in development for Einstein Adds a New Dimension.
View Joy Hakim's speech at the Smithsonian Institution. Courtesy of BookTV CSpan2.