The Simons Center for Geometry and Physics presents “Paul Dirac and the Religion of Mathematical Beauty,” a colloquium by Graham Farmelo on Wednesday, November 14, at 5:30 pm in the Della Pietra Family Auditorium, Room 103. A reception will be held at 5 pm.
Abstract: Paul Dirac is sometimes described as the theorist’s theorist. Co-inventor of the most revolutionary scientific theory of the past 150 years, he is now best known for conceiving anti-matter theoretically, before experimenters detected it. Mathematical beauty was “almost a religion” to him, he remarked. In this review of his troubled life and his path-breaking work, Farmelo will look at how this type of beauty became an obsession for him and why he is now regarded as visionary of the modern relationship between geometry and physics.
About the Speaker
Graham Farmelo is a biographer and science writer, a fellow at Churchill College, University of Cambridge, and an adjunct professor of physics at Northeastern University. He is best known for his work on science communication and as the author of The Strangest Man, a prize-winning biography of the theoretical physicist Paul Dirac.