We're working on a new version of PRX. Want a sneak peek?

Caption: The Trouble With Physics, by Lee Smolin. Published by Houghton Mifflin, 2006
The Trouble With Physics, by Lee Smolin. Published by Houghton Mifflin, 2006 

Episode 23 - Lee Smolin

From: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Series: How to Think About Science
Length: 53:56

HOW TO THINK ABOUT SCIENCE: Part Twenty-Three of a documentary series by David Cayley, a producer with the CBC Radio program Ideas. Modern societies have tended to take science for granted as a way of knowing, ordering and controlling the world. Clips includes: Lee Smolin, a theoretical physicist and author of The Trouble with Physics: The Rise of String Theory, The Fall of Science and What Comes Next.

Ep-23-lee-smolin-book_small In this episode, theoretical physicist Lee Smolin talks about string theory – the theory that matter is ultimately composed of tiny vibrating strings. It’s a conjecture, he says, that now dominates his field but can’t be test experimentally. Lee Smolin explores the unprecedented character of the string revolution, as it’s called, in his 2006 book called The Trouble With Physics: The Rise of String Theory, The Fall of Science and What Comes Next. And it’s much more than just a complaint about string theory hogging the limelight in theoretical physics. The book also takes a wide-ranging look at the unresolved questions that have perplexed physics for the last century, and makes a plea for a return to the more philosophically adventurous style that Smolin thinks characterized the physicists of the early 20th century. Lee Smolin is a member of the faculty of the Perimeter Institute at the University of Waterloo.

To hear the full audio, sign up for a free PRX account or log in.

Piece Description

In this episode, theoretical physicist Lee Smolin talks about string theory – the theory that matter is ultimately composed of tiny vibrating strings. It’s a conjecture, he says, that now dominates his field but can’t be test experimentally. Lee Smolin explores the unprecedented character of the string revolution, as it’s called, in his 2006 book called The Trouble With Physics: The Rise of String Theory, The Fall of Science and What Comes Next. And it’s much more than just a complaint about string theory hogging the limelight in theoretical physics. The book also takes a wide-ranging look at the unresolved questions that have perplexed physics for the last century, and makes a plea for a return to the more philosophically adventurous style that Smolin thinks characterized the physicists of the early 20th century. Lee Smolin is a member of the faculty of the Perimeter Institute at the University of Waterloo.

Broadcast History

This 24 part series first aired on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Musical Works

Title Artist Album Label Year Length
CHAVA'S SONG MICHAEL HEDGES MICHAEL HEDGES: BEYOND BOUNDARIES. WINDHAM HILL 05:14
BECAUSE IT'S THERE MICHAEL HEDGES MICHAEL HEDGES: BEYOND BOUNDARIES. WINDHAM HILL 05:02
THE 2ND LAW MICHAEL HEDGES MICHAEL HEDGES: BEYOND BOUNDARIES. WINDHAM HILL 05:07

Related Website

http://www.cbc.ca/ideas/features/science/index.html#