The Theory of Everything: The Origin and Fate of the Universeby Stephen Hawking
Stephen Hawking is widely believed to be one of the world’s greatest minds, a brilliant theoretical physicist whose work helped reconfigure models of the universe and define what’s in it. Imagine sitting in a room listening to Hawking discuss these achievements and place them in historical context; it would be like hearing Christopher Columbus on the New… See more details below
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Stephen Hawking is widely believed to be one of the world’s greatest minds, a brilliant theoretical physicist whose work helped reconfigure models of the universe and define what’s in it. Imagine sitting in a room listening to Hawking discuss these achievements and place them in historical context; it would be like hearing Christopher Columbus on the New World.
Hawking presents a series of seven lectures—covering everything from big bang to black holes to string theory—that capture not only the brilliance of Hawking’s mind but his characteristic wit as well. Of his research on black holes, which absorbed him for more than a decade, he says, “It might seem a bit like looking for a black cat in a coal cellar.”
Hawking begins with a history of ideas about the universe, from Aristotle’s determination that the Earth is round to Hubble’s discovery, more than 2,000 years later, that the universe is expanding. Using that as a launching pad, he explores the reaches of modern physics, including theories on the origin of the universe (e.g., the Big Bang), the nature of black holes, and space-time. Finally, he poses the questions left unanswered by modern physics, especially how to combine all the partial theories into a “unified theory of everything.” “If we find the answer to that,” he claims, “it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason.”
A great popularizer of science as well as a brilliant scientist, Hawking believes that advances in theoretical science should be “understandable in broad principle by everyone, not just a few scientists.” In this book, he offers a fascinating voyage of discovery about the cosmos and our place in it. It is a book for anyone who has ever gazed at the night sky and wondered what was up there and how it came to be.
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Meet the Author
Stephen W. Hawking is widely considered to be the world’s greatest mind; a brilliant theoretical physicist whose work reconfigured models of the universe and redefined its basic governing laws. Both among the greatest scientific developments of the 20th century were his work with Roger Penrose which showed that Einstein's General Theory of Relativity implied that space and time would begin in the Big Bang and an end in black holes, and his conclusion that General Relativity must be unified with Quantum Theory which indicated that black holes should not be completely black, but rather should emit radiation and eventually evaporate and disappear. His hypothesis was that the universe has no edge or boundary in imaginary time, which implies that its beginning was completely determined by the laws of science.
Professor Hawking has twelve honorary degrees. He was awarded the CBE in 1982, and was made a Companion of Honour in 1989. He is the recipient of many awards, medals and prizes, is a Fellow of The Royal Society and a Member of the US National Academy of Sciences.
Stephen Hawking continues to combine family life (he has three children and three grandchildren), and his research into theoretical physics together with an extensive programme of travel and public lectures.
- Cambridge, England
- Date of Birth:
- January 8, 1942
- Place of Birth:
- Oxford, England
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