Albert Einstein: The Man Behind the Math

New York University

Matthew Stanley teaches the history and philosophy of science at NYU. He holds degrees in astronomy, religion, physics, and the history of science and is interested in the connections between science and the wider culture. He has held fellowships at the British Academy, and the Max Planck Institute, and was recently awarded the NYU Distinguished Teaching Award. Professor Stanley is the author of Einstein’s War: How Relativity Triumphed Amid the Vicious Nationalism of World War I.

 

Overview

Albert Einstein’s ideas changed the way we see the universe, the meaning of truth, and the very limits of human knowledge. This class will examine how Einstein’s questioning nature led to a revolution in science, and particularly how his groundbreaking theories emerged from seemingly simple questions about how we experience the world.

Einstein’s elevation to worldwide fame was certainly notable. People sought out his views on everything from world peace to the nature of God. The picture of Einstein that emerges is a figure somehow both revolutionary and deeply traditional, emblematic of the modern age and also profoundly uncomfortable with it.

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