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The Epic Quest to Understand the Quantum Nature of Cause and Effect

From Aristotle’s Physics to quantum teleportation, the scientific pursuit of instantaneous connections
For millennia, scientists have puzzled over a simple question: Does the universe have a speed limit? If not, some effects could happen at the same instant as the actions that caused them — and some effects, ludicrously, might even happen before their causes. By one hundred years ago, it seemed clear that the speed of light was the fastest possible speed. Causality was safe. And then quantum mechanics happened, introducing spooky connections that seemed to circumvent the law of cause and effect. Inspired by the new physics, psychologist Carl Jung and physicist Wolfgang Pauli explored a concept called synchronicity, a weird phenomenon they thought could link events without causes. Synchronicity tells that sprawling tale of insight and creativity, and asks where these ideas — some plain crazy, and others crazy powerful — are taking the human story next.

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Genre: Nonfiction / Science / Physics / Quantum Theory

On Sale: August 18th 2020

Price: $30 / $38 (CAD)

Page Count: 304

ISBN-13: 9781541673632

Reader Reviews


Writing beautifully, Halpern describes with lucidity and great verve the whole story of how physics has led us to rethink what synchronicity means and ultimately to examine what Einstein once called "spooky action at a distance."—Gino Segre, author of The Pope of Physics

"An elegant and smoothly written account of how fundamental physics has informed our view of the cosmos from ancient times to the present. An engaging and informative blend of the scientific advances and the lives of the people who made them. A great read!"
Ian Stewart, author of Do Dice Play God?
"A masterful account of the developments of fundamental physics over the past century."—Marcus Chown, author of Solar System
Synchronicity is a very informative and thought-provoking account of humankind's efforts from antiquity to the present to understand the causal structure of the everyday world and, during the past century, to unite that understanding with the apparently acausal nature of the quantum world of atoms and particles. Paul Halpern writes with remarkable clarity and insight in a very accessible and engaging style."—David C. Cassidy, author of Beyond Uncertainty
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