Walter Isaacson is president of the Aspen Institute. He has been chairman and CEO of CNN and managing editor of TIME magazine. He is the author of several books including the US bestseller BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: AN AMERICAN LIFE.
Acclaimed biographer Isaacson examines the remarkable life of "science's preeminent poster boy" in this lucid account (after 2003's Benjamin Franklin and 1992's Kissinger). Contrary to popular myth, the German-Jewish schoolboy Albert Einstein not only excelled in math, he mastered calculus before he was 15. Young Albert's dislike for rote learning, however, led him to compare his teachers to "drill sergeants." That antipathy was symptomatic of Einstein's love of individual and intellectual freedom, beliefs the author revisits as he relates his subject's life and work in the context of world and political events that shaped both, from WWI and II and their aftermath through the Cold War. Isaacson presents Einstein's research-his efforts to understand space and time, resulting in four extraordinary papers in 1905 that introduced the world to special relativity, and his later work on unified field theory-without equations and for the general reader. Isaacson focuses more on Einstein the man: charismatic and passionate, often careless about personal affairs; outspoken and unapologetic about his belief that no one should have to give up personal freedoms to support a state. Fifty years after his death, Isaacson reminds us why Einstein (1879-1955) remains one of the most celebrated figures of the 20th century. 500,000 firsr printing, 20-city author tour, first serial to Time; confirmed appearance on Good Morning America. (Apr.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
The author who splendidly captured Ben Franklin in a 2003 biography here aims to reclaim Einstein. With a 16-city tour. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
"I found so much to admire; there are many places where I just had to cheer what Isaacson had written."-- Dudley Herschbach, Professor of Science at Harvard
"Isaacson has admirably succeeded in weaving together the complex threads of Einstein's personal and scientific life to paint a superb portrait."-- Arthur I. Miller, author of "Einstein, Picasso"
"Isaacson has written a crisp, engaging, and refreshing biography, one that beautifully masters the historical literature and offers many new insights into Einstein's work and life."-- Diana Kormos Buchwald, General Editor of the Collected Papers of Albert Einstein
"This book will be widely and deservedly admired. It is excellently readable and combines the personal and the scientific aspects of Einstein's life in a graceful way."-- Gerald Holton, Professor of Physics at Harvard and author of "Einstein, History, and Other Passions"
"Isaacson's treatment of Einstein's scientific work is excellent: accurate, complete, and just the right level of detail for the general reader. Taking advantage of the wealth of recently uncovered historical material, he has produced the most readable biography of Einstein yet."-- A. Douglas Stone, Professor of Physics at Yale
"With unmatched narrative skill, Isaacson has managed the extraordinary feat of preserving Einstein's monumental stature while at the same time bringing him to such vivid life that we come to feel as if he could be walking in our midst. This is a terrific work."-- Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of "Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln"
"Walter Isaacson has captured the complete Einstein. With an effortless style that belies a sharp attention to detail and scientific accuracy, Isaacson takes us on a soaring journey through the life, mind, and science of the man who changed our view of the universe."-- Brian Greene, Professor of Physics at Columbia and author of "The Fabric of the Cosmos"
"Once again Walter Isaacson has produced a most valuable biography of a great man about whom much has already been written. It helps that he has had access to important new material. He met the challenge of dealing with his subject as a human being and describing profound ideas in physics. His biography is a pleasure to read and makes the great physicist come alive."-- Murray Gell-Mann, winner of the 1969 Nobel Prize in Physics and author of "The Quark and the Jaguar"
"This is a brilliant intellectual tapestry -- and a great read. Skillfully weaving Einstein's revolutionary scientific achievements, his prolific political initiatives, his complex personal life, and his fascinating personality, Isaacson has transformed the transformer of the twentieth century into a beacon for the twenty-first century."-- Martin J. Sherwin, coauthor of "American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer," winner of the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for biography