Jewish Lives is a branch of Yale Press dedicated to biographies of eminent Jewish portrayed in all their magnificence.
The site explains: "Individual volumes illuminate the imprint of Jewish figures upon literature, religion, philosophy, politics, cultural and economic life, and the arts and sciences."
I decided to pick up Einstein His Space and Times by Steven Gimbel. Why? Einstein is the Father of the Theory of General Relativity and the Newton of the XX century so it sounded proper to give space to him.
To start with him.
He has been a revolutionary man with a revolutionary theory in a revolutionary time where sufferance, hate, discrimination, a new asset of the world mixed at a new vision of the universe, space, time, at the appearance of the atomic bomb and new and never seen perils like the massive destruction caused by a nuclear war.
Gimbel is a philosopher but his book presents a great clarity when he speaks in detail of physics' thematics as well.
I noticed that the author is frank, honest giving of Einstein a complete portrait but at the same time he treats him with respect, reverence.
This one is the first real biography I read of Albert Einstein and I found it compelling, captivating.
Albert Einstein's family was Jewish but very opened, so little Albert studied for a long time in a catholic school, absorbing also the other religion created by another revolutionary Jew: Jesus.
Albert Einstein was a rebel student, someone intolerant at school, teachers, conventions and someone who preferred to learn and develop his own ideas without to follow what teachers said.
He wanted to think with his own brain.
When he completed his studies no one wanted to see him around for a work for this reason: his instability, and also his lack of discipline. Everyone thought that a guy like that one wasn't the best person to choose and hire.
But a friend helped Einstein and his situation started to change in better permitting him to elaborate his theory of relativity and at the same time to earn some money.
It's simple to understand reading this biography why once Einstein said: "Imagination is more important than knowledge."
He was in grade to see what no other one was seeing thanks first of all to his fervid imagination, an open mind.
Opposition against this theory was cruel under many aspects, but I guess most people were also envious and jealous because of this brain and his capacity of seeing a new universe, a new world under a complete different perspective. Someone who put in discussion a past of centuries made of certainties, talking of physics.
This biography will also treat the sad relationship and marriage with Mileva Maric the christian physicist, his first wife and the arrival of Elsa, Einstein's cousin, like also Einstein's worries for his children and his long trips made for money for giving them certainties. The money of his Nobel Prize went to his children.
Princeton University and Wisconsin University paid something like 15.000 dollars, an immense amount of money for that time to Einstein for a series of conferences in the USA in 1921.
The physicist accepted with great pleasure to attend these conferences and the first contact established with Princeton became a long story of respect, collaboration, friendship with that institution.
Being a physicist Einstein's home became Princeton under many aspects when he settled in the USA. There he spent most of his years although as added Gimbel, Einstein felt his existential life like the one of a man without a land and without a country.
In the book also the political views of Einstein that you will see will change and will be delusions.
It is analyzed his idea of religion. After all as writes Gimbel a Jew remains a Jew also when he isn't particularly religious.
It is a touching book and biography this one that I suggest to everyone because lovely, in grade to reveal the real Einstein to the world, with clarity.
I thank Yale University Press for the physical copy of this book.
Anna Maria Polidori