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New York Review Books

When We Cease to Understand the World

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Title: When We Cease to Understand the World
Author: Labatut, Benjamin
ISBN: 9781681375663
Publisher: New York Review Books
Published: 2021
Binding: Quality
Language: English
Condition: New
New from the publisher

Fiction 1333377

Publisher Description:
Shortlisted for the 2021 International Booker Prize

A fictional examination of the lives of real-life scientists and thinkers whose discoveries resulted in moral consequences beyond their imagining.

When We Cease to Understand the World is a book about the complicated links between scientific and mathematical discovery, madness, and destruction.

Fritz Haber, Alexander Grothendieck, Werner Heisenberg, Erwin Schrödinger--these are some of luminaries into whose troubled lives Benjamín Labatut thrusts the reader, showing us how they grappled with the most profound questions of existence. They have strokes of unparalleled genius, alienate friends and lovers, descend into isolation and insanity. Some of their discoveries reshape human life for the better; others pave the way to chaos and unimaginable suffering. The lines are never clear.

At a breakneck pace and with a wealth of disturbing detail, Labatut uses the imaginative resources of fiction to tell the stories of the scientists and mathematicians who expanded our notions of the possible.