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J. Caleb Wherry

Scientist. Engineer. Musician.

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ISBN-13: 978-0465023943

I was really excited about this book when I first saw it. Feynman was a brilliant physicist and his other writings I have read are excellent (Feynman Lectures, for example). He was a master at explaining ideas and I thought this book would reflect that. I was excited about seeing how he would bring together different ideas that were outside his area of expertise.

This book, however, has fallen short. I have to be completely honest here, I did not finish the book. I couldn’t. I got half way through the book and it was a struggle getting that far (the book is only about 120 pages)! I found myself having to re-read almost every page two and three times. Feynman is usually very eloquent when he speaks but in this lecture series… not so much. It is almost like there wasn’t any proofing when this book was transcribed from his lectures.

I also did not like the content of the lectures very much. Feynman is all over the place in these lectures and he sometimes side-hands the historically “soft” sciences that deal with things like society. I do not agree with this sentiment and it annoys me when I read it from him.

I will eventually give this book another try and re-read it but I just can’t get through it at this point in time. Feynman himself didn’t want these lectures published apparently and I can see why…