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The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Hardcover – Oct 31 2010
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"[The Ultimate Quotable Einstein] is a compelling selection. . . . Students of Einstein's work and life, who are familiar with these contexts, can find many embellishments to their research, and often puzzling contrary notes to customary portrayals of his stance on issues ranging from Zionism to domestic life."--Choice
About the Author
Alice Calaprice is a renowned expert on Albert Einstein and was a longtime senior editor at Princeton University Press. She has worked with the "Collected Papers of Albert Einstein" since the founding of the project, has copyedited and overseen the production of all the volumes, and administered the accompanying translation series with a grant from the National Science Foundation. She is the author of several popular books on Einstein and was a recipient of the Literary Market Places award for individual achievement in scholarly editing.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Princeton University Press, 2011.
Edited by Alice Calaprice
By L. Edward Sizemore
For the Denton Record-Chronicle
The Ultimate Quotable Einstein is neither novel nor reference work. It is the sort of delightful book that one dips into here and there, from time to time, for the simple pleasure of doing so.
Calaprice arranges the material in 23 topical chapters, each dealing with a particular subject, such as death, education, Jews and Judaism, music, and Science and Scientists, to name but a few.
Of special interest are the final chapters. There is a longish chapter on miscellaneous topics, followed by a chapter of Einstein's poetry, as well as quotes attributed to Einstein -- some rather questionable. The concluding chapter has quotes about Einstein by others.
The beauty of this book is that it allows us to see Einstein the man, as well as Einstein the scientist. He was, for example, essentially Jewish, though not observant. In a later chapter, we see Einstein as an international advocate of peace. One marvels to see that Einstein, arguably the greatest scientist of all time, was also a human being, subject to the same frailties that bedevil us all.
This small-format book contains a wealth of material for anyone interested in the man and his work. For that matter, for anyone who knows the pleasure of dipping in here and there.
L. EDWARD SIZEMORE is a book lover from McKinney. His reviews have appeared in The Dallas Morning News and the Denton Record-Chronicle.
I can think of no better introduction to Einstein's science and thought than this marvelous book. It is regrettable that the editor has decided to make this the final edition.
The book is handy, and reliable, in case you might want to check if Einstein really said it.
An extra bonus in Freeman Dyson's lovely sendoff.
In it Dyson offers an intriguing and unique insight to Einstein's letters, and Helen (one of Einstein's executors) who maintained the large Einstein archive. Einstein at his death donated it to the Hebrew University in Israel, and Dyson recalls a cold and snowy night when the archives were crated and shipped from the Institute in Princeton to Jerusalem.
It was a few weeks before Helen died, like it was a premonition.
Dyson wrote about it beautifully in the foreword to this book with Einstein quotations.
You can see most of it in the Look Inside feature on the amazon product page.
The Foreword is also where Dyson wrote about how Helen was babysitting the Dyson children long ago.
The topics of course cover physics, but they also range into philosophy, and extend further into religion, politics, and much else. I think this range of topics shows the dual nature of Einstein, a man who valued solitary investigation into the nature of the universe, but was also willing and able to passionately engage in the social world.
I've read a few biographies about Einstein, but hearing him speak in his own words offers a different and valuable perspective which is essential if you really want to get to know what kind of person he was. I think you'll find confirmation that he was indeed a uniquely profound genius whose towering reputation is entirely warranted, while also being subject to the imperfections and limitations which are inherent in being human.
This being said, I believe Alice Calaprice has done a wonderful job writing this book, and I highly recommend it.
Note- It's also available as an eBook for Kindle Fire, which is the version I own.
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