Empire of the Stars by Arthur I Miller - review by Paul Davies

Paul Davies

A Galaxy of Egos

Empire of the Stars

By

Little, Brown 416pp £17.99 order from our bookshop
 

Some ideas seem so outlandish that they meet irrational resistance from even the most brilliant minds. When a young Indian student discovered in 1930 that stars could shrink to nothing and disappear completely from the universe, nobody would take him seriously. But the student was right: he had discovered black holes.

Subramanian Chandrasekhar became a Nobel prizewinning astrophysicist. Empire of the Stars tells of his struggle to overcome not just the resistance of a sceptical scientific community, but the social prejudices of 1930s England, as personified by Sir Arthur Eddington, the grand old man of British astrophysics.

Stars are balls of hot

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