The Unification of Physics
December 10, 2014 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm EST
The Unification of Physics: The Quest for a Theory of Everything (Series: Beyond the Big Bang: Searching for Meaning in Contemporary Physics)
From the discovery of new galaxies and nearly undetectable dark energy to the quantum entanglement of particles across the universe, new findings in physics naturally elicit a sense of awe and wonder. For the founders of modern physics — from Einstein and Bohr to Heisenberg, Pauli, and Bohm — a fascination with deeper questions of meaning and ultimate reality led some of them to explore esoteric traditions and metaphysics. More recently, however, physicists have largely shunned such philosophical and spiritual associations. What can contemporary physics offer us in the quest to understand our place in the universe? Has physics in some ways become a religion unto itself that rejects the search for existential meaning?
Cost: Members: $5 Non-members: $15 Non-member students: $7
*Reception to follow.
• Adam Frank, PhD
Professor of Astrophysics, University of Rochester
Co-founder of NPR science blog 13.7 Cosmos & Culture
Author of "About Time: Cosmology and Culture at the Twilight of the Big Bang" and "The Constant Fire. Beyond the Science vs. Religion Debate"
• David Kaiser, PhD
Professor of the History of Science and Head of the Program in Science, Technology, and Society, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Author of "How the Hippies Saved Physics: Science, Counterculture, and the Quantum Revival"
Tim Maudlin, PhD
• Professor of Philosophy, New York University
Author of "The Metaphysics within Physics and Philosophy of Physics: Space and Time"
• Moderator: Steve Paulson
Executive Producer, Wisconsin Public Radio's nationally-syndicated program