When Albert Einstein moved from Zurich to Prague in early April 1911 to take up his first full professorship teaching theoretical physics, he was not yet world-famous, though heralded in scientific circles as likely “the next Copernicus”. The position at the German University in Prague was a significant step up for Einstein, then 32, in terms of status and salary. Yet he found life in Bohemia more alienating than enchanting: German-speakers like himself were an entrenched minority in the Hapsburg Slav capital, and Einstein’s young family had no established ties in Prague. This relative isolation, however, proved enormously fruitful, as we learn in this second part our discussion with Princeton University history professor Michael Gordin, author of the newly published book Einstein in Bohemia.


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