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This analysis of how modern science works and influences our world has a particular emphasis on the role of thematic elements - those often unconscious presuppositions that guide scientific work to success or failure. It asks questions such as "how did Albert Einstein's ideas shape the imaginations of 20th-century artists and writers?"; "are there national differences between styles of scientific research?"; and "by what mechanisms is progress in science achieved despite the enormous diversity of individual, often conflicting, efforts?". Many of the conclusions emerge from the study of Albert Einstein, demonstrating that Einstein's main pursuit, the discovery of unity among seemingly disparate aspects of physics, was psychologically supported by a surprising ally: the high literary works in which he immersed himself, above all Goethe's.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780674005303
ISBN-10: 0674005309
Format: Paperback
(229mm x 152mm x 21mm)
Pages: 400
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 30-Oct-1998
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Gerald Holton

Gerald Holton is Mallinckrodt Research Professor of Physics, and Research Professor of History of Science, Harvard University.

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