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Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman Paperback – April 1 1997
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A New York Times bestseller―the outrageous exploits of one of this century's greatest scientific minds and a legendary American original.
Richard Feynman, winner of the Nobel Prize in physics, thrived on outrageous adventures. Here he recounts in his inimitable voice his experience trading ideas on atomic physics with Einstein and Bohr and ideas on gambling with Nick the Greek; cracking the uncrackable safes guarding the most deeply held nuclear secrets; accompanying a ballet on his bongo drums; painting a naked female toreador. In short, here is Feynman's life in all its eccentric―a combustible mixture of high intelligence, unlimited curiosity, and raging chutzpah.Black-and-white photographs throughout
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- Publisher : WW Norton; Reprint edition (April 1 1997)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 352 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0393316041
- ISBN-13 : 978-0393316049
- Item weight : 340 g
- Dimensions : 13.97 x 2.54 x 21.08 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: #277,149 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #768 in Scientist Biographies (Books)
- #1,647 in Physics Books
- #1,975 in Physics (Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from Canada
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Thanks Feynman. I want to study mechanical engineering even more now. I want to study hard so I understand well enough to do great things.
He enjoyed the book, however I was very disappointed when it arrived and the front cover had been bent back leaving a large crease. Too late to send it back for another. it was the first thing he noticed
The book is entertaining, in an apparently deliberatly nonliterary way. It rolls along well enough with odd, unconnected stories told by an eccentric character, with the pretense of selling the importance of being curious ... and of pursuing attractive women .. in equal measure, by my reading.
There is no doubt the writer was a talented physicist, but his humorous stories betray a disdain for his contemporaries that I found off-putting.
Top reviews from other countries
Not to these eyes.
The text is a collection (I insist: an accumulation, not a connected set of essays) written by the late Dr Feynman, roughly along his life. These are more - mere - anecdotes, yet not experiences. It starts when the author is a child and from there the anecdotes carry on through an adolescence, youth, maturity, manhood and professional success.
But the problem is what I mentioned above: these are loose things that happened to the man, some funny-ish, some mildly interesting, almost all plainly forgettable. I couldn't mention one either remarkable or memorable. The reader, half way into each of the chapters, expects a bomb that does not happen. So in the end (if you manage to get there) the result is quite disappointing.
It is a fact that Dr Feynman was a very intelligent man; he was not a very good writer.
Reviewed in India 🇮🇳 on October 7, 2017
I'm no native English speaker and I had no problems following it.
I would recommend it to anyone interested (even slightly) in science, but as well to anyone who feels that he/she has to say something in this world.
A beautiful history of a man who always lived his life as he wanted and did it brilliantly!
Clearly it's from his point of view, and only covers areas he felt like discussing, so there's very little about his marriage (although there is another book which has more detail on that), and nothing about the Challenger disaster (again, another book).
But the anecdotes are interesting, some are hilarious, and I've managed to get my son to read and enjoy this as well. His time with the Manhattan Project is a particular source of amusement, and his move to Brazil is another rich fountain of anecdotes.
The Big Bang Theory has probably brought his name to the attention of another generation of people.
You've probably got at least 2 series' worth of material in this book.