Andy Martin


Genius in France: An Idea and Its Uses


Princeton University Press 288pp £27.95 order from our bookshop

Is Stephen Hawking a genius? Putting myself in the shoes of some rival black-hole wallah, I might be tempted to say, hold on a nano-second. There are plenty of other people doing fine work in cosmology. So he gets to call ‘Hawking radiation’ after himself. And he gets a Hollywood biopic made about him and they give the guy pretending to be him an Oscar. OK, but is that genius or mainly mythification, hype and idolatry?

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