Based on the newly released personal letters of Albert Einstein, Walter Isaacson explores how an imaginative, impertinent patent clerk, a struggling father in a difficult marriage who couldn't get a teaching job or a doctorate, became the mind reader of the creator of the cosmos, the locksmith of the mysteries of the atom and the universe. His success came from questioning conventional wisdom and marveling at mysteries that struck others as mundane. This led him to embrace a morality and politics based on respect for free minds, free spirits, and free individuals.
These traits are just as vital for this new century of globalization, in which our success will depend on our creativity, as they were for the beginning of the last century, when Einstein helped usher in the modern age.
It's all relative: listen to more about Albert Einstein.
©2007 Walter Isaacson. All rights reserved; (P)2007 Simon and Schuster Inc. All rights reserved.
"[A] lucid account." (Publishers Weekly)
"Isaacson has admirably succeeded in weaving together the complex threads of Einstein's personal and scientific life to paint a superb portrait." (Arthur I. Miller, author of Einstein, Picasso)
"Isaacson has written a crisp, engaging, and refreshing biography, one that beautifully masters the historical literature and offers many new insights into Einstein's work and life." (Diana Kormos Buchwald, General Editor of the Collected Papers of Albert Einstein)
All I could think about was Einstein's theories and life for weeks. Isaacson definitely knows how to brings a life together in a book with absolute harmony. I was fortunate to have discovered the beauty of relativity as LIGO confirmed gravitational waves.
Urban planner. Environmentalist. Geek.
A few years ago, I missed Halloween because I was so addicted to Isaacson's Steve Jobs biography. His earlier handling of Einstein's life is equally engaging.
He does a great job balancing both Einstein's life and science. While it's certainly not a science book, you'll learn a lot about how specifically Einstein came to his ideas, which, as it happens, leads to one of the best explanations of special relativity I have read in any book.
The last 3rd is less engaging but that's not Isaacson's fault: unlike Jobs, Einstein wasn't doing new, crazy things right up until his death. His role, however, in social and political debates of his time are certainly fascinating.
Who knew that besides being the smartest guy ever Einstein was also a straight up spiritual gansta first class. Love Einstein.
Besides my brain glossing over during the maths I feel like this is a incredible, biography, a history of the birth of the nuclear age, and of course a glimpse of Einsteins theory of relatively.
In my opinion Walter Isaacson is one of the best biographers, Edward Herrmann is definitely my favorite narrator, and Albert Einstein is one of my favorite human beings. I couldn't ask for much more. I have listened to both the abridged and unabridged versions and would recommend both. The abridged version is nice if you have already read or listened to the full version and just want to go back and get the highlights. When I was younger I always imagined Einstein as having more of an impersonal, awkward-genius type personality. But after reading this biography I view him as one of the most well rounded, personable individuals out there. If I could go back in time and meet anyone Einstein would be the first man I would visit.
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