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Serving the Reich: The Struggle for the Soul of Physics Under Hitler

Philip Ball
Item #: D73689
Format: Cloth
Pages/Publication Date: 303 / 2013
Publisher: Bodley Head
ISBN: 9781847922489
No Longer Available

After World War II, most scientists in Germany maintained that they had been apolitical or actively resisted the Nazi regime, but the true story is much more complicated. In this history, the author of Invisible and Universe of Stone contrasts the career of the naïve Kaiser Wilhelm Institute director Peter Debye with those of two other leading physicists during the Third Reich: Max Planck—the elder statesman of physics who quietly upheld his own principles—and Werner Heisenberg, an active proponent of Nazi Germany's bid to develop nuclear power and weapons. As Ball suggests here, however, the nation's scientific community generally acquiesced to state control, a dilemma that remains an important ethical issue to this day.

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