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Books to Read

  1. Jul 12, 2013 #1
    I'm a junior physics major intending on a PhD in physics. I was wondering what books physicists recommend? I would like to read A Breif History of Time but I think I know most of the things in the book and would like something more advanced with plenty of math. Occupation wise, I am stuck between wanting to research the very big (the cosmos) or the very small (particles, quarks, etc.). Any recommendations will be appreciated.

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 12, 2013 #2
    Hey I'm in your exact position as an up and coming junior majoring in physics. I have also had a tough time finding books that are aimed at my curiosities, while appealing to my level of understanding. I haven't had much success, but, if you ever feel like reading something intriguing that isn't too dense, I did find that try Ernst Mach makes a good and often illuminating read on the philosophy of physics moreso,. For example, History of the Conservation of Energy was a good one.
  4. Jul 13, 2013 #3
    Feynman's Lectures on Physics. I'm guessing you've already heard of it considering the fact that you're a physics major. It provides THE BEST overview of most if not all topics and branches of physics. I'm currently a junior too and I'll tell you it is very challenging at points but very rewarding to be able to understand and apply Feynman's intuition towards science as a whole.

    Volume 1: mechanics
    Volume 2: e&m
    Volume 3: quantum
  5. Jul 16, 2013 #4
    Alright, thanks for the replies guys.
  6. Jul 16, 2013 #5
    Also TehBigBoss, I am researching Feynman's books and see that there's some other works called "Six Easy Pieces" and "Six Not So Easy Pieces." Are these Feynman's lectures in a condensed form?
  7. Jul 17, 2013 #6
    Nope. Six easy pieces are the first six chapters of volume one of the FLP (Feynman Lectures On Physics). Its a bit pricey I know but being a physics major yourself I would just add it to this semester's textbook list. If money is a serious issue I would just get the PDF which can be found from a quick Google search. But I gotta tell you those three volumes will look good on anyone's desk.

    I think the other one is just six harder lectures pulled from all the other lectures and volumes. Not 100% sure if its cross volume or just from volume three.

    Download the PDF files. Fall in love. Buy the three volume set. That's what I did.
  8. Jul 18, 2013 #7
    Haha alright thanks, will do.
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