Creative Lives and Works: Antony Hewish, Martin Rees and Neil Turok is a collection of interviews conducted by one of England’s leading social anthropologists and historians, Professor Alan Macfarlane. Filmed over a period of 40 years, the three conversations in this volume, are part of a larger set of interviews that cut across various disciplines, from the social sciences, the sciences and to even the performing and visual arts. The current volume on three of England’s foremost astrophysicists-cosmologists is the fourth in the series of several such books. Antony Hewish, who won the Nobel Prize in 1974, in the foreword to Questions of Truth writes, ‘The ghostly presence of virtual particles defies rational common sense and is non-intuitive for those unacquainted with physics.... But when the most elementary physical things behave in this way, we should be prepared to accept that the deepest aspects of our existence go beyond our common-sense understanding’. Sir Martin Rees eloquently puts forward the problems and challenges of the 21st century, in relation to science, ethics and politics. Like Hewish and Rees, Neil Turok also piques the layman’s interest in the mysteries of the cosmic world. Immensely riveting as conversations, this collection takes one into the world of boundless discoveries hidden among the blue skies. The book will be of enormous value not just to those interested in Astronomy and Cosmology as well as the History of Science, but also to those with an inquisitive mind.
Please note: This title is co-published with Social Science Press, New Delhi. Taylor & Francis does not sell or distribute the Hardback in India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction 2. PART I Antony Hewish – In conversation with Alan Macfarlane 3. PART II Martin Rees – In conversation with Alan Macfarlane 4. PART III Neil Turok – In conversation with Alan Macfarlane
Alan Macfarlane was born in Shillong, India, in 1941 and educated at the Dragon School, Sedbergh School, Oxford and London Universities where he received two Master’s degrees and two doctorates. He is the author of over forty books, including The Origins of English Individualism (1978) and Letters to Lily: On How the World Works (2005). He has worked in England, Nepal, Japan and China as both an historian and anthropologist. He was elected to the British Academy in 1986 and is now Emeritus Professor of Anthropology at the University of Cambridge and a Life Fellow of King’s College, Cambridge. Professor Macfarlane received the Huxley Memorial Medal, the highest honour of the Royal Anthropological Institute in 2012.
The enigma and the mystery of the universe have attracted the human mind for ages. The book through its eloquently articulated transcripts brings forth the universe as perceived by the practising scientists on their journey of unravelling the mysteries to the epoch-making discoveries. The lively conversations over a wide range of topics from radio-astronomy, construction of telescopes, evolution of science in our everyday life, to the complexities and the wonders of our universe, presented in a storytelling manner with great skill and charm, make the book highly entertaining and thoroughly readable without any scientific technical jargon.
Purusattam Ray, Retired Professor
Theoretical Physics, The Institute of Mathematical Sciences