The Meaning of It All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist

Richard Feynman

“Few are aware of how involved Richard P. Feynman was with the world and how carefully and seriously he thought about his time’s social, political, and religious issues, despite the fact that many recognize his contributions to twentieth-century physics. We can now see this other side of Feynman in a wonderful book that is based on a previously unpublished, three-part public lecture he gave at the University of Washington in 1963. In it, he discusses the inherent tension between science and religion; the mistrust people have for politicians, as well as our shared fascination with UFOs, faith healing, and mental telepathy. If you want to know why Johnny can’t read, just look at how “friend” is spelled. Lastly, Feynman reflects on the death of his first wife from disease. This is Feynman in great form. He almost breaks out into a Navajo war chant. This is classic Feynman: thoughtful, humorous, and always illuminating.”