Sean Carroll at Harvard Science Center

presenting

The Biggest Ideas in the Universe:
Space, Time, and Motion

Date

Feb
3
Friday
February 3, 2023
7:00 PM ET

Location

Harvard Science Center
Hall B, 1 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA

Tickets

$24.50 (book included)

Harvard Book Store, the Harvard University Division of Science, and the Harvard Library welcome theoretical physicist, author, and host of the Mindscape podcast SEAN CARROLL for a discussion of his new book The Biggest Ideas in the Universe: Space, Time, and Motion.

A Return to In-Person Events

Harvard Book Store is excited to be back to in-person programming. To ensure the safety and comfort of everyone in attendance, the following Covid-19 safety protocols will be in place at all of our Harvard Science Center events until further notice:

  • All attendees are encouraged to wear masks. Performers may be unmasked.
  • All attendees must attest to their current health status (e.g., no current infection, symptoms or recent exposure to others with COVID-19)
  • All attendees must self-attest to the following:
  1. I am fully vaccinated against COVID-19 using a vaccine authorized by the FDA or WHO and have received my booster (if eligible), or
  2. I qualify for exemption based upon age, a medical contraindication, or firmly held religious belief.
  3. I also agree to immediately share with Harvard University Health Services any proof of my vaccination status if I am identified as an exposed person through public health contact tracing efforts.
  4. If not fully vaccinated, I have received a negative COVID-19 PCR or antigen test result in the last 24 hours.

For more information regarding Harvard University's Covid-19 safety protocols, please visit their website here.

Ticketing

General admission tickets includes one hardcover copy of The Biggest Ideas in the Universe: Space, Time, and Motion. Harvard students and faculty can select the ticket "Free RSVP for Harvard University Students/Faculty" for admission only.  A Harvard ID will be required at check-in. 

 


 

About The Biggest Ideas in the Universe

The most trusted explainer of the most mind-boggling concepts pulls back the veil of mystery that has too long cloaked the most valuable building blocks of modern science. Sean Carroll, with his genius for making complex notions entertaining, presents in his uniquely lucid voice the fundamental ideas informing the modern physics of reality.

Physics offers deep insights into the workings of the universe but those insights come in the form of equations that often look like gobbledygook. Sean Carroll shows that they are really like meaningful poems that can help us fly over sierras to discover a miraculous multidimensional landscape alive with radiant giants, warped space-time, and bewilderingly powerful forces. High school calculus is itself a centuries-old marvel as worthy of our gaze as the Mona Lisa. And it may come as a surprise the extent to which all our most cutting-edge ideas about black holes are built on the math calculus enables.

No one else could so smoothly guide readers toward grasping the very equation Einstein used to describe his theory of general relativity. In the tradition of the legendary Richard Feynman lectures presented sixty years ago, this book is an inspiring, dazzling introduction to a way of seeing that will resonate across cultural and generational boundaries for many years to come.

Praise for The Biggest Ideas in the Universe

“Sean Carroll is a wizard of empathy. In this short book, the first of three on The Biggest Ideas in the Universe, he anticipates what’s always confused you about physics and then gently guides you to enlightenment… and ultimately, to newfound wonder.” —Steven Strogatz, professor of applied mathematics, Cornell University, author of The Joy of X and Infinite Powers

“As a ten-year-old physics enthusiast, I would have loved The Biggest Ideas in the Universe. With this book, Sean Carroll rejects traditional elitism in physics and welcomes in anyone who knows only a little algebra but wants to understand the whole universe. Carroll, who has long been one of my role models for exposition about the cosmos, dreams of a world where physics is hot gossip. With this book, he takes an important step toward making this idea a reality by giving people the tools they need so they too can understand the biggest ideas—and questions—in the universe. I can’t wait to hear that people are arguing about beyond standard model physics at the Thanksgiving dinner table!” —Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, author of The Disordered Cosmos: A Journey into Dark Matter, Spacetime, and Dreams Deferred

“Sean Carroll's greatest gift isn't that he's an expert on the fundamentals of physics, which he is, but that he never speaks down to his reader. He assumes that anyone, even the uninitiated, can learn to understand the formulae that underlie complicated concepts like space and time. It is a pleasure to read his work, a greater pleasure still to get a world-class education from such a witty, thoughtful teacher.” —Annalee Newitz, author of The Future of Another Timeline and Four Lost Cities

Sean Carroll
Sean Carroll

Sean Carroll

Sean Carroll is Homewood Professor of Natural Philosophy at Johns Hopkins University and Fractal Faculty at the Santa Fe Institute. He received his Ph.D. in 1993 from Harvard University. His research focuses on the foundations of physics, including issues in quantum mechanics, spacetime, cosmology, and emergence. He is the author of several books, most recently The Biggest Ideas in the Universe, Vol. 1: Space, Time, and Motion. He has been awarded prizes and fellowships by the National Science Foundation, NASA, the Sloan Foundation, the Packard Foundation, the American Physical Society, the American Institute of Physics, the Royal Society of London, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is the host of the weekly Mindscape podcast.

Photo credit: Rachael Porter


 

Harvard Science Center
Hall B, 1 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA

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Event Series: Harvard Science Book Talks

The Harvard Science Book Talks series is a collaboration between the Harvard University Division of Science, the Harvard Library, and Harvard Book Store. The series features talks by the authors of recently published books on a variety of science-related topics and is open to both the Harvard community and to the general public. Typically, lectures are followed by a book signing with the author and refreshments. Learn more and watch recordings of past talks here

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