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Classical Purcell to Jackson?

  1. Sep 2, 2016 #1
    I heard that Griffith's Electrodynamics is at a similar level of Purcell's book on electricity; is it fine if someone goes into a graduate level electrodynamics book right after Purcell?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 2, 2016 #2
    How's your math?
  4. Sep 2, 2016 #3

    Vanadium 50

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    I took Jackson after Purcell. Got an A. However, I had a class in advanced calculus out of Hildebrand and another one in math methods out of Butkov, and I bought a copy of Wangsness if I needed some easier problems to warm up with.
  5. Sep 2, 2016 #4
    The math is a big jump from Purcell, but what about the concepts? Would that book be an adequate transition?
  6. Sep 4, 2016 #5


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    Well, I think Jackson can help to understand the concepts behind Purcell's book better, but I'm prejudiced, because I don't like Purcell's book, because I think he overcomplicates the relativistic foundation of E&M rather than simplifying it. I think rather than reading Purcell you should take Schwartz and Landau&Lifshitz vol. II for the modern relativsitic approach. Jackson is a comprehensive more conventional book in the tradition of 20th century textbooks, emphasizing the non-relativistic view and only in the later chapters introducing relativity. Nevertheless, Jackson is way better than Purcell concerning the foundations.
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