Maverick Genius: The Pioneering Odyssey Of Freeman Dyson
“Maverick Genius: The Pioneering Odyssey of Freeman Dyson.” By Phillip F. Schewe. Thomas Dunne. 352 pp. $25.99.
Over a long career at Princeton,Freeman Dyson, now 89, has contributed to numerous branches of physics, engineering, astronomy and more. In this chatty biography, Phillip F. Schewe charts his output, from quantum work with Richard P. Feynman onward. A long-term optimist, Dr. Dyson championed some unorthodox ideas, like nuclear-powered rocket ships to propel civilization into space. He has calmly insisted that religion and science hold no mutual threat, and, controversially, insisted that we consider the upside of global warming. Despite some strange digressions, Dr. Schewe knows the physics, and he gained access to colleagues, family — everyone except Freeman Dyson, who politely declined, saying, “Maybe in 50 years you’ll be able to tell whether I did anything important.”
Editor’s Note: Freeman Dyson is a member of the GWPF’s Academic Advisory Council