Copenhagen

Overview

Copenhagen is a reimagining of the mysterious wartime meeting between two Nobel laureates to discuss the atomic bomb. In 1941 the German physicist Werner Heisenberg made a strange trip to Copenhagen to see his Danish counterpart, Niels Bohr. They were old friends and close colleagues, and they had revolutionized atomic physics in the 1920s with their work together on quantum mechanics and the uncertainty principle. But now the world had changed, and the two men were on opposite sides in a world war. The meeting ...
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Copenhagen

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Overview

Copenhagen is a reimagining of the mysterious wartime meeting between two Nobel laureates to discuss the atomic bomb. In 1941 the German physicist Werner Heisenberg made a strange trip to Copenhagen to see his Danish counterpart, Niels Bohr. They were old friends and close colleagues, and they had revolutionized atomic physics in the 1920s with their work together on quantum mechanics and the uncertainty principle. But now the world had changed, and the two men were on opposite sides in a world war. The meeting was fraught with danger and embarrassment; it ended in disaster." "Why Heisenberg went to Copenhagen and what he wanted to say to Bohr are questions that have exercised historians ever since. In Michael Frayn's new play, an ambitious, fiercely intelligent, and daring dramatic sensation, Heisenberg meets Bohr and his wife, Margrethe, once again to look for the answers and to work out - just as they had worked out the internal functioning of the atom - how we can ever know why we do what we do.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Endlessly fascinating…. The most invigorating and ingenious play of ideas in many a year…. An electrifying work of art.”–Ben Brantley, The New York Times

“Superbly dramatized…. [Frayn] has an elegant, almost algebraic way with the structure of a play…. Copenhagen offers a particular kind of brain-teasing pleasure.”–John Lahr, The New Yorker

“Scintillating…. A dazzling fugue.”–San Francisco Examiner

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780413773715
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 9/1/2010
  • Series: Student Editions Series
  • Edition description: Student Edition
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 779,486
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Frayn's award-winning plays include Alphabetical Order, Make and Break and Noises Off, all of which received Best Comedy of the Year awards, while Benefactors was named Best Play of the Year. Other recent works include Democracy, and Copenhagen, winner of numerous awards including the Evening Standard and Critics' Circle Best Play Awards 1998. In 2007 the Donmar Warehouse premiered his new work The Crimson Hotel.
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2003

    Very enjoyable...

    I would suggest reading this for a variety of reasons. However, I think the best reason is that it is extremely well written and the characters interact in a natural and believable way. Don't let the topic scare you. Anyone can read this and find it enjoyable.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2001

    Bohr and Heisenberg : Why did they meet?

    In the first act of this play; Neils Bohr's wife,Margrethe,turns to her husband and asks ' Why did he come to Copenhagen? '. Bohr, who initially developed the basics of quantum mechanics, and Heisenberg , who had studied under Bohr and eventually formulated the famous uncertainty principle, were old friends and colleagues in the 1920's and 1930's. However, by 1941 their friendship had been severely strained by the Nazis' brutal oppression of Europe. Moreover, Heisenberg had chosen to remain in Nazi Germany. Suddenly, in the midst of all the chaos which has engulfed Europe, Heisenberg traveled to Copenhagen to meet with his old mentor and friend Bohr. Why he went to Copenhagen has fascinated historians for decades. Some believe that it was to convey to Bohr that Germany was planning to develop an atomic bomb. This meeting is the central theme of Frayn's wonderful play. Frayn tells this story through only three characters; Margarethe, Bohr, and Heisenberg. His characters explore a plethora of scientific and moral questions. I would recommend seeing Mr. Frayn's play performed on stage but if you can't , and if you have ever wondered why Heisenberg went to Copenhagen,then by all means purchase a copy of this marvelous work.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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