General relativity with focus on action?

In summary, the conversation discusses the use of the action principle to derive equations of motion in general relativity, and the recommendation of Landau+Lifshitz vol. 2 as a book that focuses on this approach. The Hilbert action is also mentioned as a heuristic argument for the form of the equations.
  • #1
642
160
I am having a class of general relativity. It seems that the professor will follow an approach which consist of achieve the action, and variate it to get the equations of motion (indeed, that's how we already got the geodesic equation, the dynamics of a particle in electromagnetism, the equation of the fields itself, and the action of massless particle, etc...). Do you know any book that follows such approach? That is, a book that focus mainly on the action of the fields itself.
 
Physics news on Phys.org
  • #2
Dirac derives GR equations from the principle of action.
 
  • Like
Likes dextercioby and vanhees71
  • #3
Nearly every book on GR discusses the action: Carroll, Wald, d'Inverno, etc. Which book do you use?
 
  • Like
Likes vanhees71
  • #4
My favorite for introductory GR is Landau+Lifshitz vol. 2. He uses the action principle to derive the Einstein field equation. The Hilbert action is the most simple heuristic argument for why these equations should look as they look.
 
  • Like
Likes anuttarasammyak
  • #5
Introduction to General Relativity by Bambi.

Excerpt from a book description:

"Following the approach of Lev Landau and Evgenii Lifshitz, this book introduces the theory of special and general relativity with the Lagrangian formalism and the principle of least action."

I found the book quite readable and going
straight to its object.
 
  • Like
  • Informative
Likes PeroK, anuttarasammyak and vanhees71
  • #6
vanhees71 said:
My favorite for introductory GR is Landau+Lifshitz vol. 2. He uses the action principle to derive the Einstein field equation. The Hilbert action is the most simple heuristic argument for why these equations should look as they look.
I agree that LL vol 2 is good. You mention Hilbert action as a heuristic argument. Is heuristic the right word here. I thought of Einsteins intuitive manner of developing his equations as heuristic. I would regard Hilbert's development as quite formal.
 
  • Like
Likes vanhees71
  • #7
What you call "heuristic" is pretty much a question of your preknowledge. For me the action principle is the most versatile tool to guess equations of motion given a symmetry principle and I think it's much more "intuitive" or "heuristic" than Einstein's derivation.
 

Similar threads

  • Science and Math Textbooks
Replies
6
Views
1K
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
7
Views
932
  • Beyond the Standard Models
Replies
2
Views
2K
  • Science and Math Textbooks
2
Replies
46
Views
3K
  • Mechanics
Replies
7
Views
729
  • Science and Math Textbooks
Replies
2
Views
1K
  • Science and Math Textbooks
Replies
16
Views
6K
  • Sticky
  • Science and Math Textbooks
Replies
27
Views
3K
  • Science and Math Textbooks
Replies
9
Views
3K
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
3
Views
1K
Back
Top