## Climbing the Mountain: The Scientific Biography of Julian SchwingerJulian Schwinger was one of the leading theoretical physicists of the twentieth century. His contributions are as important, and as pervasive, as those of Richard Feynman, with whom (and with Sin-itiro Tomonaga) he shared the 1965 Nobel Prize for Physics. Yet, while Feynman is universally recognized as a cultural icon, Schwinger is little known even to many within the physics community. In his youth, Julian Schwinger was a nuclear physicist, turning to classical electrodynamics after World War II. In the years after the war, he was the first to renormalize quantum electrodynamics. Subsequently, he presented the most complete formulation of quantum field theory and laid the foundations for the electroweak synthesis of Glashow, Weinberg, and Salam, and he made fundamental contributions to the theory of nuclear magnetic resonance, to many-body theory, and to quantum optics. He developed a unique approach to quantum mechanics, measurement algebra, and a general quantum action principle. His discoveries include 'Feynman's' parameters and 'Glauber's' coherent states; in later years he also developed an alternative to operator field theory which he called Source Theory, reflecting his profound phenomenological bent. His late work on the Thomas-Fermi model of atoms and on the Casimir effect continues to be an inspiration to a new generation of physicists. This biography describes the many strands of his research life, while tracing the personal life of this private and gentle genius. |

### What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

### Contents

A New York City childhood | 1 |

Julian Schwinger at Columbia University | 22 |

Schwinger goes to Berkeley | 54 |

During the Second World War | 90 |

Winding up at the Radiation Lab going to Harvard | 134 |

Quantum electrodynamics and Julian Schwingers path | 208 |

the triumph | 251 |

Greens functions and the dynamical action principle 298 | 298 |

Electroweak unification and foreshadowing of | 411 |

The Nobel Prize and the last years at Harvard | 445 |

Move to UCLA and continuing concerns | 481 |

Taking the road less traveled | 528 |

The diversions of a gentle genius | 567 |

Appendices | 627 |

B Ph D Students of Julian Schwinger | 639 |

Index of names | 645 |

The world according to Stern and Gerlach | 337 |

Custodian of quantum field theory | 371 |

### Common terms and phrases

action principle angular momentum atomic Bethe bosons calculation Casimir Casimir effect Chapter Clarice classical Columbia coupling course covariant described discussed divergences dynamical Dyson effect electric electromagnetic field electron energy equation experiment experimental formulation Glashow Green's functions Hamiltonian Harvard Heisenberg idea interview with K. A. Jagdish Mehra Julian Schwinger K. A. Milton Lagrangian Lamb shift later leptons Lett Lorentz magnetic charge mass mathematical meson method neutrons never Nobel notes nuclear physics nucleons operator Oppenheimer P. A. M. Dirac paper particles Pauli perturbation phenomenological photon Phys Physical Review physicists positron potential problem published quantized quantum electrodynamics quantum field theory quantum mechanics quarks R. P. Feynman Rabi Radiation Lab recalled relativistic renormalization result scalar scattering Schwinger's lectures self-energy Shelter Island Conference sonoluminescence source theory spin symmetry talk technique tensor theoretical things tion Tomonaga transformation UCLA University vacuum polarization vector waveguides weak interactions Weinberg Weisskopf