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Truth and Beauty: Aesthetics and Motivations in Science 1st Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
What the essays reveal are something incredibly personal. They reflect what one of the most prominent Astrophysicists of our time feel about aesthetics - from the perspective of C.P Snow's "Two cultures".
And Art, seen from this scientist's point of view, seems to be all the richer for it, contrary to popular belief that rationality strips Art of its elemental passion. The essays go to show that the world we think we live in is not so fragmented after all, and keen perception, augmented with a desire to express, can smoothen the shards that have been left behind in the wake of reductionist thinking.
If you have ever dreamed about the creative cogwheels in scientific history, the essays go to show that they the burning need for an aesthetic whole need not be fundamentally different in the Arts. But there is a interesting and debatable point - which is linked with the unproductive geriatric scientist, and his equally productive counterpart.
But for the last chapter, based on the Karl Schwarzchild lectures on general relativity, most of the essays are at the "scientifically educated" level. One of the most remarkable chapters is about Arthur Eddington, and the Chandrasekhar's open-mindedness is assesing the acutely "conservative" giant of Stellar Physics for his contributions and his drawbacks. One cannot be overwhelmed by history at such moments.
What M.C. Escher's offered the world of mathematical paradoxies and oddities with his lithographs is somewhat symbiotic to Chandrasekhar's lectures. One can only hope that these subtle threads between the "two cultures" will remain.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Chandrasekhar humbly reports on the achievements of other scientists at different times and speculates about the implications. An interesting read.Published 22 months ago by Paul G.
These lectures have almost no depth at all. Chandrasekhar has basically just stitched together a bunch of quotations, adding nothing original himself. Read morePublished on December 5, 2007 by Viktor Blasjo