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Flight from WonderAn Investigation of Scientific Creativity$
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Albert Rothenberg

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199988792

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199988792.001.0001

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Empirical Background and the Bases for the Investigation

Empirical Background and the Bases for the Investigation

(p.27) 3 Empirical Background and the Bases for the Investigation
Flight from Wonder

Albert Rothenberg

Oxford University Press

The empirical investigation into scientific creativity begins with several primary-source accounts of theoretical breakthroughs from great scientists of the past. Featured are Albert Einstein’s description of an observer in free fall, which led to his formulation of the general theory of relativity; Charles Darwin’s initial conception of natural selection in evolution; Niels Bohr’s creative formulation of the complementarity precept as the basis for quantum mechanics; James Watson’s discovery of the double helix structure of DNA; and Hideki Yukawa’s conception of the meson particle, leading to the meson theory and a large class of subatomic particles. The type of cognition each scientist used, and their emotions and passion at the moments of insight, are also described.

Keywords:   Einstein, Darwin, Bohr, Watson, Yukawa, general theory of relativity, natural selection, complementarity, double helix

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