Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Einstein started a book club, and here's the reading list by Ilana Strauss | Tuesday, May 10, 2016

What the beloved genius and his buddies discussed in the Olympia Academy is legendary.

 

(Photo: Wikipedia)  

 

It's hard to think about Albert Einstein without imagining an old, crazy-haired genius. But once upon a time, before he ever came up with a theory of relativity, founded Jerusalem's Hebrew University or had his brain stolen, Einstein was a 23-year-old patent clerk, working for minimum wage and bumming around Bern, Switzerland.

The young man decided to earn some extra cash tutoring physics. He put up an ad, and philosophy student Maurice Solovine responded. The two didn't do much traditional studying, but instead chatted about philosophy. Einstein's friend, mathematician Conrad Habicht, joined their debates, and the three met regularly over drinks and cigars in Einstein's bohemian apartment to read and discuss physics and philosophy, mockingly calling themselves the Olympia Academy.

Even after the club broke up a few years later, Einstein said it influenced many of his theories. We've gathered together some of the books and essays the Olympia Academy read and discussed. Maybe the literature that inspired Einstein can inspire you to be clear and clever, too. View slideshow....

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