Writers’ Gallery

Our Writers' Gallery features short pieces about physics by authors who are both renowned physicists and prize-winning writers. Some of these are original contributions and others are excerpts from longer works. Many are linked to more information about the authors and their work.

 

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Feynman

Richard Feynman is one of the most brilliant and fascinating physicists of the twentieth century. He picked locks for fun at the Manhattan Project, reinvented quantum physics and investigated the space shuttle Challenger tragedy. Author Jim Ottaviani and artist Leland Myrick collaborated to create the graphic novel "Feynman" about his life. In this excerpt, Feynman shares the groundwork of quantum electrodynamics with students in New Zealand. Excerpted with permission from the publisher, First Second Books.


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Insatiable Birdie

Can a book inspire you as a child to grow up and solve one of the most famous mysteries of mathematics? Come take a peek inside Physics for Entertainment to find out. Originally published over seventy years ago in Russia, this classic book answers many fascinating questions that one might not even think are physics questions. “Can an invisible man see? Why are all cats grey when the candles are out?” The excerpt below explains the habits or our beloved drinking bird toy.


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Death From the Skies

Philip Plait

"The Universe is trying to kill you. It's nothing personal. It's trying to kill me too" Astronomer, Phil Plait, describes how everything from asteroids to gamma ray burst would end impact the Earth.


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The Education of T.C. MITS --What Modern Mathematics Means to You

Lillian Lieber

How will I use math and physics in the real world? Lillian Lieber answers this age old question in this recently re-released classic. She describes how math and physics function as a democracy in a triumph of good over evil.


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How the Universe Got Its Spots

Janna Levin

The story of Dr. Levin's research in the form of letters to her mother. They contain an intriguing blend of science and personal anecdote.


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Celebrating the Poetry of Imagination Without Boundaries

Lawrence M. Krauss

There is poetry in physics discoveries that is worth celebrating, even if one is not a cosmologist.