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Einstein in Love

Cover of Einstein in Love

Einstein in Love

A Scientific Romance
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In Einstein in Love, Dennis Overbye has written the first profile of the great scientist to focus exclusively on his early adulthood, when his major discoveries were made. It reveals Einstein to be very much a young man of his time-draft dodger, self-styled bohemian, poet, violinist, and cocky, charismatic genius who left personal and professional chaos in his wake. Drawing upon hundreds of unpublished letters and a decade of research, Einstein in Love is a penetrating portrait of the modern era's most influential thinker.

In Einstein in Love, Dennis Overbye has written the first profile of the great scientist to focus exclusively on his early adulthood, when his major discoveries were made. It reveals Einstein to be very much a young man of his time-draft dodger, self-styled bohemian, poet, violinist, and cocky, charismatic genius who left personal and professional chaos in his wake. Drawing upon hundreds of unpublished letters and a decade of research, Einstein in Love is a penetrating portrait of the modern era's most influential thinker.

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Table of Contents-
  • Prologue: The Sacred and the Profane

    Part One. Runaways
    1. On the Road
    2. Coffeehouse Wars
    3. The Rose of Hungary
    4. The Cheshire's Grin
    5. Family Values

    Part Two. Relative Motions
    6. The White World
    7. Irreversible Acts
    8. The Boys of Physics
    9. The Seacoast of Bohemia
    10. Six Weeks in May

    Part Three. The Revolutionary at Home
    11. The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie
    12. Quantum Doubts
    13. In the Company of Microbes
    14. The Man Who Abhorred Baths
    15. The Witches' Sabbath

    Part Four. Gravity's Rainbow
    16. The Joy of Falling
    17. King of the Hill
    18. The Last Waltz
    19. The Landscape of Bad Dreams
    20. The November Revolution
    21. Quantum Times

    Part Five. Master of the Universe
    22. Mach's Revenge, or, The War of the World Matter
    23. The Belly of the Beast
    24. The Last Scoundrel
    25. The Melted World
    Epilogue
    Notes
    Bibliography

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from January 3, 2000
    Of the many recent and imminent books on Einstein, Overbye's (Lonely Hearts of the Cosmos) may have the most compelling title and most fulfilling approach. An accomplished science writer, Overbye, deputy science editor of the New York Times, tells the story of Einstein's early years, when he cultivated his image as the shaggy and sloppy, garrulous and brilliant bad boy of physics and committed himself to twin passions: revolutionizing our understanding of the universe, starting with light, gravity and time; and living the bohemian life with the woman he'd eventually marry, Mileva Maric, a superior mathematician in her own right. At first, it seemed that Mileva and Albert would make the world together, but Albert's passion for physics proved the stronger. As Einstein's fame grew and his theories - the development of which Overbye explains brilliantly - gained adherents, he escaped the drudgery of work in the patent office for a series of university appointments, while his wife and their children faded into the background. He took up with other women, which, as the reader learns, was even sadder than it may at first appear, because of all that Maric gave up to be with him, including their first child, Lieserl, born out of wedlock and sent away so that she wouldn't hinder Einstein's career. Overbye's aim - which he accomplishes with the precision of a scientist and the ear of a musician - is to portray Einstein the man, not the myth ("no picture of Einstein can be complete that does not explore both disparate strains of his life, both the sacred and the profane"). In the end, the reader may come to like Einstein less but appreciate his achievements even more.

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Einstein in Love
Einstein in Love
A Scientific Romance
Dennis Overbye
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