The Character of Physical Law

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Character of Physical Law
The Character of Physical Law.jpg
First edition
Author Richard Feynman
Country United States
Language English
Subject Physics
Genre Non-fiction
Published 1965 (BBC)
Pages 173 pp.
ISBN 0679601279
LC Class QC71 .F44

The Character of Physical Law is a series of seven lectures by physicist Richard Feynman concerning the nature of the laws of physics. The talks were delivered by Feynman in 1964 at Cornell University, as part of the Messenger Lectures series. The BBC recorded the 7 lectures. Their text was published by the BBC in 1965 in a book by the same name.[1]

The lectures covered the following topics:

  1. The law of gravitation, an example of physical law
  2. The relation of mathematics and physics
  3. The great conservation principles
  4. Symmetry in physical law
  5. The distinction of past and future
  6. Probability and uncertainty - the quantum mechanical view of nature
  7. Seeking new laws


Critical reception has been positive.[2][3] The Physics Teacher gave a favorable review for The Character of Physical Law, writing that although the book was initially intended to supplement the BBC recordings of the lectures, it was "complete in itself and will appeal to a far wider audience" and recommended it to scientists and non-scientists.[4]

See Also[edit]

The Feynman Lectures on Physics


  1. ^ Feynman, Richard (1994). The Character of Physical Law. Modern Library. ISBN 0-679-60127-9. 
  2. ^ Narodny, Leo (1991). "Reviewed Work: The Character of Physical Law by Richard Feynman". Leonardo 24 (4): 493. doi:10.2307/1575548. Retrieved 29 June 2015. 
  3. ^ Michalos, Alex C. (June 1967). "Reviewed Work: The Character of Physical Law by Richard Feynman". Philosophy of Science 34 (2): 194. Retrieved 29 June 2015. 
  4. ^ Hutchisson, Elmer (1968). "BOOK AND FILM REVIEWS: The Character of Physical Law". The Physics Teacher 6 (89): 89–90. doi:10.1119/1.2351260. Retrieved 29 June 2015. 

External links[edit]