The Einsteinium Revolution – The Historical Roots of his Breakthroughs, by Hanoch Gutfreund and J├╝rgen Renn – a review

NB. I was sent this book as a review copy.

From Princeton University Press

I started this book fearing that it would be just another tale of Einstein’s brilliance, the singular and incredible leaps in imagination that he took as a lowly patent clerk and of the enormous impact of his work. However, the book offered much more, proving far more intriguing. There are countless books out there (many of them very good) that detail his life and his works, but that see him very much as an isolated person, overturning the centuries old ideas of science and philosophy with paradigm shift after paradigm shift. This book paints a different picture in an incredibly compelling manner.

The book is really about the nature of science as Einstein found it, of the ideas and results that were already putting pressures on classical physics, and this is paralleled with the Copernican revolution, where the epicyclic models were grinding to a halt under their own complexity, and it took for someone to reimagine the results in a different light to see a much simpler and more elegant truth.…