The Story of Quantum Mechanics [Book Review]
Review of Metaphysics 22 (4):754-754 (1969)
AbstractThis introduction to quantum mechanics requires little previous knowledge of physics. The book consists of three separate projects completed with varying degrees of success. The first chapters discuss classical physics with special attention to the concepts of matter and light. The middle chapters are devoted to quantum physics itself and how it developed from, and accounted for, problematic phenomena of earlier physics. Detailed, although not heavily mathematical, attention is given to the key experiments of quantum physics. These chapters go on to discuss the so-called elementary particles, conservation laws, "strangeness," spin, various field theories, and other topics of current research. The final chapters are devoted to the philosophical implications of quantum mechanics. This section, focused mainly on causality and free will, is superficial and disappointing--of more interest to ethics and theology than to the philosophy of science. The philosophical remarks which were made parenthetically in the first two sections of the book were more provocative and might well have been expanded in this section. If this last section were eliminated, the first section abbreviated, and the book released in paperback, the book would be a better buy as informative introduction to quantum mechanics. There are many diagrams, tables, illustrations, and photographs, as well as a glossary of technical terms and a critical bibliography.--S. O. H.
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