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Books in general relativity?

  1. Sep 7, 2004 #1

    EL

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    Looking for a good book in general relativity at graduate level. Suggestions?
     
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  3. Sep 7, 2004 #2

    chroot

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    Wald's "General Relativity" or Misner, Thorne and Wheeler's "Gravitation" are both excellent. Wald is more up-to-date.

    - Warren
     
  4. Sep 7, 2004 #3
    as well as Weinberg's too is excellent. Wald's the best.
     
  5. Sep 7, 2004 #4

    Stingray

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    I found Wald the best "standard" textbook, with Weinberg as a useful second perspective (they're quite different). Although it is now quite old, my favorite relativity book is Synge. His descriptions of cosmology and black holes needs to be supplemented elsewhere, but the physics itself is covered far better than anywhere else I think. It is also wonderfully written.
     
  6. Sep 7, 2004 #5

    robphy

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    Here's another vote for Wald and MTW.
    Synge is also pretty good... especially considering it was published in the early 60s.

    Although it's not quite a graduate text, Ludvigsen's text is quite geometrical in spirit
    http://titles.cambridge.org/catalogue.asp?isbn=052163976X

    Texts as good references:
    Sachs and Wu's "General Relativity for Mathematicians (Graduate Texts in Math Ser Vol 48)"
    Hawking and Ellis's "The Large Scale Structure of Space-Time".
     
  7. Sep 8, 2004 #6

    EL

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    Thanks. Looks like Wald is a good choise.

    What is the level of mathematics in it?

    Myself I have previously used Foster/Nightingale "A short course in general relativity" which I found OK but not outstanding. I would like to have a more clear and rigorous approach. Someone who can compare these two books?
     
  8. Sep 8, 2004 #7
  9. Sep 8, 2004 #8
    EL : yes, Wald is not so easy as compared to some others. But it is pretty much self-contained, so this is not really an issue.
     
  10. Sep 8, 2004 #9

    pervect

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    The level of mathematics is Wald is high, but the approach is rigorous. A fair amount of important mathematical content is summarized in appendices in the book. It's definitelly a worthwhile book.
     
  11. Sep 8, 2004 #10

    EL

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    Thanks all of you again.
    Have decided to buy Wald, think it fits me well. (And the price is nice, at least compared to MTW... :redface: )
     
  12. Sep 8, 2004 #11
    Should we call Wald for royalties :wink:
     
  13. Sep 8, 2004 #12

    chroot

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    Wald's a great book. It's not as wordy as MTW, but it contains more material. If you're totally new to GR, Wald will probably be hard to follow. "A Short Course in GR" by Foster and Nightingale is actually an excellent warm-up for Wald or MTW, in my opinion.

    - Warren
     
  14. Sep 9, 2004 #13

    Fredrik

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    Wald's book is excellent, and you should definitely buy it. If you're new to general relativity you might also want to buy "A first course in general relativity" by Bernard Schutz, mainly because it explains special relativity brilliantly, and because it has an introduction to tensors that I think is even better. I found it very useful to have read those sections of Schutz's book before I read Wald.

    It might also be a good idea to get a book on differential geometry. I don't know what book to recommend though. I just know that it should be a book that uses an index-free notation. I read Spivak myself, and it's not bad, but I suspect there are better books. Maybe someone else can recommend something.
     
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