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Einstein S Dreams

Author: Alan Lightman
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307789748
Size: 69.46 MB
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A modern classic, Einstein’s Dreams is a fictional collage of stories dreamed by Albert Einstein in 1905, about time, relativity and physics. As the defiant but sensitive young genius is creating his theory of relativity, a new conception of time, he imagines many possible worlds. In one, time is circular, so that people are fated to repeat triumphs and failures over and over. In another, there is a place where time stands still, visited by lovers and parents clinging to their children. In another, time is a nightingale, sometimes trapped by a bell jar. Now translated into thirty languages, Einstein’s Dreams has inspired playwrights, dancers, musicians, and painters all over the world. In poetic vignettes, it explores the connections between science and art, the process of creativity, and ultimately the fragility of human existence.

Ghost

Author: Alan Lightman
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0375713433
Size: 78.52 MB
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Three months after being unexpectedly fired from his banking job, David takes a temporary position at a local mortuary, where he experiences an inexplicable encounter with the unknown that transforms his relationships with everyone around him, forces him to confront the shifting nature of reality, and explores the boundary between the physical world and the spiritual one. Reprint. 20,000 first printing.

The Accidental Universe

Author: Alan Lightman
Publisher: Corsair
ISBN: 1472109201
Size: 14.35 MB
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In The Accidental Universe, physicist and novelist Alan Lightman explores the emotional and philosophical questions raised by discoveries in science, focusing most intently on the human condition and the needs of humankind. Here, in a collection of exhilarating essays, Lightman shows us our own universe from a series of fascinating and diverse perspectives. He takes on the difficult dialogue between science and religion; the conflict between our human desire for permanence and the impermanence of nature; the possibility that our universe is simply an accident; the manner in which modern technology has divorced us from enjoying a direct experience of the world; and our resistance to the view that our bodies and minds can be explained by scientific logic and laws alone. With his customary passion, precision, lyricism and imagination, in The Accidental Universe Alan Lightman leaves us with the suggestion - heady and humbling - that what we see and understand of the world and ourselves is only a tiny piece of the extraordinary, perhaps unfathomable whole. Praise for Alan Lightman: '...a gem of a novel that is strange witty erudite and alive with Lightman's playful genius.' Junot Diaz. 'It would not seem possible for Alan Lightman to match his earlier tour de force, Einstein's Dreams, but in Mr g he has done so - with wit, imagination, and transcendent beauty.' Anita Desai.

A Sense Of The Mysterious

Author: Alan Lightman
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 1400078199
Size: 54.40 MB
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Presents a collection of essays exploring the human dimensions of science, furnishing portraits of seminal scientists Richard Feynman, Albert Einstein, Edward Teller, and Vera Rubin, as well as reflections on science and art, imagination and metaphor in science, and the social and spiritual implications of technology.

Great Ideas In Physics

Author: Alan P Lightman
Publisher: McGraw Hill Professional
ISBN: 9780071378437
Size: 24.15 MB
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The conservation of energy, the second law of thermodynamics, the theory of relativity, quantum mechanicstogether, these concepts form the foundation upon which modern physics was built. But the influence of these four landmark ideas has extended far beyond hard science. There is no aspect of twentieth-century cultureincluding the arts, social sciences, philosophy, and politicsthat has not been profoundly influenced by them. In Great Ideas in Physics, Alan Lightman clearly explains the physics behind each of the four great ideas and deftly untangles for lay readers such knotty concepts as entropy, the relativity of time, and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. Throughout the book he uses excerpts from the writings of scientific luminaries such as Newton, Kelvin, Einstein, and de Broglie to help place each in its proper historical perspective. And with the help of expertly annotated passages from the works of dozens of writers, philosophers, artists, and social theorists, Lightman explores the two-way influences of these landmark scientific concepts on our entire human culture and the world of ideas.

The Dead Fish Museum

Author: Charles D'Ambrosio
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307264734
Size: 70.72 MB
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“In the fall, I went for walks and brought home bones. The best bones weren’t on trails—deer and moose don’t die conveniently—and soon I was wandering so far into the woods that I needed a map and compass to find my way home. When winter came and snow blew into the mountains, burying the bones, I continued to spend my days and often my nights in the woods. I vaguely understood that I was doing this because I could no longer think; I found relief in walking up hills. When the night temperatures dropped below zero, I felt visited by necessity, a baseline purpose, and I walked for miles, my only objective to remain upright, keep moving, preserve warmth. When I was lost, I told myself stories . . .” So Charles D’Ambrosio recounted his life in Philipsburg, Montana, the genesis of the brilliant stories collected here, six of which originally appeared in The New Yorker. Each of these eight burnished, terrifying, masterfully crafted stories is set against a landscape that is both deeply American and unmistakably universal. A son confronts his father’s madness and his own hunger for connection on a misguided hike in the Pacific Northwest. A screenwriter fights for his sanity in the bleak corridors of a Manhattan psych ward while lusting after a ballerina who sets herself ablaze. A Thanksgiving hunting trip in Northern Michigan becomes the scene of a haunting reckoning with marital infidelity and desperation. And in the magnificent title story, carpenters building sets for a porn movie drift dreamily beneath a surface of sexual tension toward a racial violence they will never fully comprehend. Taking place in remote cabins, asylums, Indian reservations, the backloads of Iowa and the streets of Seattle, this collection of stories, as muscular and challenging as the best novels, is about people who have been orphaned, who have lost connection, and who have exhausted the ability to generate meaning in their lives. Yet in the midst of lacerating difficulty, the sensibility at work in these fictions boldly insists on the enduring power of love. D’Ambrosio conjures a world that is fearfully inhospitable, darkly humorous, and touched by glory; here are characters, tested by every kind of failure, who struggle to remain human, whose lives have been sharpened rather than numbed by adversity, whose apprehension of truth and beauty has been deepened rather than defeated by their troubles. Many writers speak of the abyss. Charles D’Ambrosio writes as if he is inside of it, gazing upward, and the gaze itself is redemptive, a great yearning ache, poignant and wondrous, equal parts grit and grace. A must read for everyone who cares about literary writing, The Dead Fish Museum belongs on the same shelf with the best American short fiction. From the Hardcover edition.

Our Story Begins

Author: Tobias Wolff
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307268802
Size: 78.58 MB
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This collection of stories—twenty-one classics followed by ten potent new stories—displays Tobias Wolff's exquisite gifts over a quarter century. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Knife Thrower

Author: Steven Millhauser
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307763870
Size: 61.50 MB
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Included in this short story collection is "The Sisterhood of the Night", now a major motion picture. From the bestselling author of Martin Dressler, this volume explores the magnificent obsessions of the unfettered imagination, as well as the darker, subterranean currents that fuel them. With the panache of an old-fashioned magician, Steven Millhauser conducts his readers from the dark corners beneath the sunlit world to a balloonist's tour of the heavens. He transforms department stores and amusement parks into alternate universes of infinite plentitude and menace. He unveils the secrets of a maker of automatons and a coven of teenage girls. And on every page of The Knife Thrower and Other Stories, Millhauser confirms his stature as a narrative enchanter in the tradition of Nabokov, Calvino, and Borges.

Vintage Munro

Author: Alice Munro
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 1101872411
Size: 18.25 MB
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WINNER OF THE NOBEL PRIZE® IN LITERATURE 2013 Vintage Readers are a perfect introduction to some of the greatest modern writers presented in attractive, accessible paperback editions. “In Munro’s hands, as in Chekhov’s, a short story is more than big enough to hold the world—and to astonish us again and again.” —Chicago Tribune In an unbroken procession of brilliant, revelatory short stories, Alice Munro has unfolded the wordless secrets that lie at the heart of all human experience. She has won three Governor General’s Literary Awards in her native Canada, as well as the National Book Critics Circle Award. Vintage Munro includes stories from throughout her career: The title stories from her collections The Moons of Jupiter; The Progress of Love; Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage; “Differently,” from Selected Stories, and “Carried Away,” from Open Secrets.

A Closed Eye

Author: Anita Brookner
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307826279
Size: 25.16 MB
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In A Closed Eye, Anita Brookner explores, with compassionate insight and stylistic brilliance, the self-inflicted paradoxes in the life of Harriet Lytton, a woman whose powers of submissiveness and self-denial are suddenly tested by the dizzying prospect of sexual awakening. In Harriers gallant struggle with the single great temptation that comes her way, Brookner creates a hauntingly flawed heroine and a study in the evasions and disappointments that make up all our lives.