Richard P. Feynman

Feynman, Richard Phillips

Richard Phillips Feynman (fīn´mən), 1918–88, American physicist, b. New York City, B.S. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1939, Ph.D. Princeton, 1942. From 1942 to 1945 he worked on the development of the atomic bomb. He taught (1945–50) at Cornell and became professor of theoretical physics at the California Institute of Technology in 1950. The Feynman diagram, proposed by him in 1949, shows the track of a particle in space and time and provides a clear means of describing particle interactions. Feynman also made significant contributions to the theories of superfluidity and quarks. In 1957 he and Murray Gell-Mann proposed the theory of weak nuclear force. Feynman shared the 1965 Nobel Prize in Physics with Shinichiro Tomonaga and J. S. Schwinger for work leading to the establishment of the modern theory of quantum electrodynamics. He wrote the influential Feynman Lectures on Physics (commemorative issue, 3 vol., 1990), Feynman Lectures on Gravitation (1994), and Feynman Lectures on Computation (1996).

See his Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! (1985), What Do You Care What Other People Think? (1988), QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter (1988, repr. 2006), and The Meaning of It All (1998); Perfectly Reasonable Deviations from the Beaten Track: The Letters of Richard P. Feynman (2005), ed. by M. Feynman; biographies by J. Gleick (1993), J. Mehra (1994), and L. M. Krauss (2011); C. Sykes, No Ordinary Genius: The Illustrated Richard Feynman (1996); D. L. Goodstein and J. R. Goodstein, Feynman's Lost Lecture (1996); J. Gribbin and M. Gribbin, Richard Feynman (1997); G. J. Milburn, The Feynman Processor (1999).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

Richard P. Feynman: Selected full-text books and articles

Great Physicists: The Life and Times of Leading Physicists from Galileo to Hawking By William H. Cropper Oxford University Press, 2001
Librarian's tip: Chap. 25 "What Do You Care? Richard Feynman"
Time's Arrow & Archimedes' Point: New Directions for the Physics of Time By Huw Price Oxford University Press, 1996
Librarian's tip: "The Wheeler-Feynman Theory in Brief" begins on p. 65
Quantum Theory, the Uncertainty Principle, and the Alchemy of Standardized Testing By Wasserman, Selma Phi Delta Kappan, Vol. 83, No. 1, September 2001
Brilliant Scientist and Teacher of Teachers By Sundaram, T. R The World and I, Vol. 13, No. 8, August 1998
A Century of Nobel Prizes Recipients: Chemistry, Physics, and Medicine By Francis Leroy Marcel Dekker, 2003
Librarian's tip: "Feynman, Richard Phillips" begins on p. 175
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