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Classic Feynman: All the Adventures of a Curious Character

by Richard Feynman

Other authors: Ralph Leighton (Editor)

Series: Feynman Memoirs

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507948,918 (4.43)10
Presents a collection of stories and lectures by world-renowned physicist Richard Feyman, the 1965 Nobel Prize winner in physics who helped to develop the atomic bomb. Includes audio CD.

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I enjoyed parts of this memoir. Richard Feynman recorded several stories of his life and the author of the book put these recordings together as a book. The title comes from a meet and greet event at Princeton . Someone asked Mr Feynman if he would like lemon or cream with his tea. He was distracted and was half listening to her so he said he wanted both lemon and cream. The hostess proclaimed, "Mr Feynman surely you must be joking?" I thought this was a very cute story.
Mr Feynman was a genius. I guess anyone awarded a Noble prize probably has some brains. Several stories were rather scientific and I got lost, however, there were other stories that revealed how thought through problems. He got excited if he could visualize how physics could solve real world problems. He had no patience for snobbery or arrogrance or fools. He enjoyed trying new hobbies like learning music or different languages. He felt a scientist needed to be a part of the world and not stuck in a lab. He said, "how could you be great at science if you buried yourself academia?" ( )
  debbie13410 | Oct 22, 2022 |

Richard Feynman is a Nobel Prize-winning physicist who, among other things, worked at Los Alamos on the development of the atomic bomb. Physics must have been at the core of his thoughts and his life. . .but you won't find much of it in this "as told to" autobiography.

It seems as though Professor Feynman would prefer that we all see him as a "regular guy." As a result, instead of giving us a sense of what exploring the subtle workings of the universe meant to him, he regales us with tales of the practical jokes he has played on his acquaintances and colleagues, love for spending time in strip clubs with small-time grifters, prowess at picking the locks of co-workers' cabinets, and progress in drawing female nude sketches and playing percussion instruments. At one point, Feynman entertains us with lessons he has learned in developing his skills as a pick-up artist, including advice about treating women poorly to pique their interest. Feynman dismisses the liberal arts as shallow, confused thinking and a waste of time.

Some, it appears, see these stories as charming. I didn't. I gave the book two stars instead of one because I suspect that it truthfully shows the reader what meeting Feynman briefly and casually would have been like. But I would have preferred to get a glimpse of the world of physics from one of its greatest minds. In addition to telling us how he managed to get a room to himself at Los Alamos by pretending to have a female roomate, it would have been interesting for Feynman to tell us how the scientists involved with that project thought about, and dealt with, their roles in unleashing nuclear warfare. ( )
  TH_Shunk | Jul 6, 2021 |
Feynman at his most bumptious and self-congratulatory. Some fun remarks about safe-cracking, though. ( )
  themulhern | May 3, 2015 |
Classics from Feynman's earlier autobiographical works arranged in roughly chronological order. A bonus CD of some of the source material is included, and is well worth the price of admission. Feynman was hilarious to listen to, a born raconteur. Fun collection that's light on the science and heavy on the anecdotes. Recommended. ( )
  satyridae | Apr 5, 2013 |
Excellent collection of anecdotes about Feynman's life and his observations. Highly recommended to glimpse the "human side" of one of the 20th Century's top physicists. ( )
  rondoctor | May 2, 2011 |
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Richard Feynmanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Leighton, RalphEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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This is an OMNIBUS work containing BOTH "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" AND "What Do YOU Care What Other People Think?" and should NOT be combined with the individual works included.
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Presents a collection of stories and lectures by world-renowned physicist Richard Feyman, the 1965 Nobel Prize winner in physics who helped to develop the atomic bomb. Includes audio CD.

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