Paul Ehrenfest and the Dilemmas of Modernity

  title={Paul Ehrenfest and the Dilemmas of Modernity},
  author={Frans van Lunteren and M. J. Hollestelle},
  pages={504 - 536}
This essay considers the highly ambivalent attitude of the Austrian-Dutch physicist Paul Ehrenfest toward contemporary developments in both science and society. On the one hand, he was in the vanguard of the quantum and relativity revolutions, supported industrialization and economic planning based on mathematical models, and, in general, cherished technocratic ideals. The essay highlights several influences that shaped his attitude in these respects, from his ties with the Philips Physics… 

The Local versus the Global in the history of relativity: The case of Belgium

This article contributes to a global history of relativity, by exploring how Einstein’s theory was appropriated in Belgium. This may sound like a contradiction in terms, yet the

The reception of relativity in the Netherlands

This article reviews the early academic and public reception of Albert Einstein's theory of relativity in the Netherlands, particularly after Arthur Eddington's eclipse experiments of 1919.

The Local versus the Global in the history of relativity: The case of Belgium

The local attitudes of conservative Belgian Catholic scientists and philosophers exemplify a global pattern: while critics of relativity feared to become marginalized by the scientific, political, and cultural revolutions that Einstein and his theory were taken to represent, supporters sympathized with these revolutions.

“Philosophysics” at the University of Vienna: The (Pre-)History of Foundations of Quantum Physics in the Viennese Cultural Context

Vienna today is one of the capitals of research on foundations of quantum physics. We reconstruct the development of modern physics in Vienna, with a focus on foundations of quantum mechanics (FQM),

On the sudden rise of Dutch science at the end of the nineteenth century: a core-periphery approach

ABSTRACT This paper analyzes the remarkable success of Dutch scientists near the end of the nineteenth century, as exemplified by five Nobel laureates in the period 1901–1913. Some historians suggest

A Complete Bibliography of Publications in Isis, 2000{2009

accademiche [38]. Ada [45]. Adrian [45]. African [56]. Age [39, 49, 61]. Al [23]. Al-Rawi [23]. Aldous [68]. Alex [15]. Allure [46]. America [60, 66]. American [49, 69, 61, 52]. ancienne [25].



Vienna Indeterminism: Mach, Boltzmann, Exner

A specific way of addressing the question whether the laws involving the basic constituents of nature are statistical is studied, a problem which all three physicists to be studied solved in different ways that were mainly conditioned by their different concepts of probability.

Einstein's Clocks, Poincare's Maps: Empires of Time

A dramatic new account of the parallel quests to harness time that culminated in the revolutionary science of relativity, Einstein's Clocks, Poincare's Maps is "part history, part science, part

Klein, Hilbert, and the Gottingen Mathematical Tradition

T HE WILHELMIAN ERA witnessed an enormous transformation in German mathematics, one that manifested itself not only in new research developments in pure mathematics but also in the emergence of a

Crisis and the construction of modern theoretical physics

  • S. Seth
  • Physics
    The British Journal for the History of Science
  • 2007
This paper takes up the concept of ‘crisis’ at both historical and historiographical levels. It proceeds through two examples of periods that have been described by historians of physics using a

Fokkers "greep in de verte"; Nederlandse fysica en filosofie in het interbellum

Fokker's physical worldpicture: Dutch physics and philosophy in the interwar period During the early twenties the Dutch physicist Adriaan Daniel Fokker, erstwhile pupil of Lorentz and collaborator of

Paul Ehrenfest’s Rough Road to Leiden: A Physicist’s Search for a Position, 1904–1912

Paul Ehrenfest (1880–1933) received his Ph.D. degree at the University of Vienna in 1904 and moved with his wife and young daughter to St. Petersburg in 1907, where he remained until he succeeded