Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Einstein- Husband, Lover and Father

CmdrTaco posted about 8 years ago | from the man-myth-and-hairdo dept.


evilsheep writes "A large collection of correspondence shedding light on Einstein's personal life and perspectives was made public today by The Albert Einstein Archives at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Spanning almost 3500 pages, the correspondence encompasses letters to and from his first and second wives and children between the years 1912- 1955.This newly released batch of letters fill in details to create a 'higher resolution' image of Einstein beyond what was previously known of his personal life. The collection has been in the Einstein Archives at the Hebrew University for many years, but was not made public in accordance with the will of Einstein's stepdaughter, Margot, who specified that they not be revealed until 20 years after her death. Margot died in July 1986. Einstein wrote almost daily letters to his second wife Elsa and to her daughter Margot whilst away from home about delivering and listening to boring lectures, playing music with friends, or trying to stop smoking."

cancel ×


Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692628)

The truth is Einstein was not a healthy man.

First off his wife [] helped him come up with the e=mc^2 theory, yet she received no credit for it.

In the original publishing of the theory in 1905 she was credited with co-author credits []

Einstein himself spoke to her as an equal in respect to science. He all but admits to collaborating with her on his 1905 papers which made him famous.

In a 1901 letter he refers to the theory of relativity as our work []

Another small piece of Einstein history that few people know is the terms of his divorce from his first wife (The woman mentioned above) was that she received all prize money when he wins a Nobel prize for the theory of relativity. He agreed to this and in fact Einstein never saw any of the money when he won the Nobel prize.

Einstein awarded Nobel PrizeAfter seven nominations, Albert wins the 1921 medal for physics. He gives the prize money to Mileva, per their 1919 divorce agreement. It is the smallest cash award since the Nobel Prize was created, worth about $348,000 (in 2003 USD).

Sorry, I can't link to it but it is in the PBS timeline.

The kicker is that after his divorce from the woman who helped make him famous, the guy married his cousin. Yup, his COUSIN!!!!

cousin fucker []

So there you have it folks, the man so many think of as a symbol of modern science not only stole ideas (or at the very least refused to acknowledge getting help) from his wife but also decided that it would be fun to screw his cousin.

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692700)

The kicker is that after his divorce from the woman who helped make him famous, the guy married his cousin. Yup, his COUSIN!!!!

Check out cousin marriage [] . You might be surprised that this isn't illegal and/or controversial. If you're going to complain about the man, find something valid to complain about.

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (1)

dfn5 (524972) | about 8 years ago | (#15692882)

You might be surprised that this isn't illegal and/or controversial. If you're going to complain about the man, find something valid to complain about.
From your link...

In some jurisdictions this would be considered illegal as incest.

Some think it's acceptable. Some think it's not. Sounds controversial to me.

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (1)

Pancake Bandit (987571) | about 8 years ago | (#15692749)

Please learn to keep an open mind. In many societies, marrying your cousin is a common practice. Generations of inbreeding among cousins is necessary before birth abnormalities become statistically important, so the practice is more a social deviance than a health concern in the United States.

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692765)

I meant "healthy" in the emotional and mental sense, not physical.

With that said, would you stick it in your cousin?

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (1)

Pancake Bandit (987571) | about 8 years ago | (#15692946)

In many cases, cousins who marry didn't grow up together or have much of a childhood relationship. The only difference between them marrying and two unrelated people marrying is the social stigma associated with it. Even if they did grow up together, who are we to judge peoples' choices in that respect? It's like developing a relationship later in life with an old childhood friend.

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692964)

blah blah blah,

would you do it?

Screw your cousin I mean?

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (0, Offtopic)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | about 8 years ago | (#15693062)

By your rational marrying your sister would be okay if you never met her before (adopted, whatever). Pretty creepy if you ask me.

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (1)

Pancake Bandit (987571) | about 8 years ago | (#15693186)

Ah, except that's when recessive genes start to become a concern.

Re:Does it have the part where he fucks his cousin (1)

nla0 (974050) | about 8 years ago | (#15693123)

yes !

Re:Does it have the part where he f*** his cousin (1)

captainbeardo (868266) | about 8 years ago | (#15692867)

You can still marry your cousin in Colorado. Yee-Haw!

Re:Does it have the part where he f*** his cousin (1)

zolaris (963926) | about 8 years ago | (#15692898)

Sweet I have this cousin that went to U.C. Boulder... heh, just kidding.

Ill fucker (-1, Troll)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | about 8 years ago | (#15693048)

I would fuck his cousin too but necrophilia is illegal.

Wow! (4, Funny)

creimer (824291) | about 8 years ago | (#15692629)

So Albert Einstein is actually human. For all these years, I thought he existed only in Apple's "Think Different" advertisements.

Re:Wow! (1)

tnk1 (899206) | about 8 years ago | (#15692690)

In line with Steve Jobs' relentless pursuit of perfection, he realized that it may add more sales if the adorable scruffy looking guy in the ads (nicknamed 'Al' by insiders) had a suitable backstory that could be drawn upon in future ad campaigns.

There is some talk that the character is loosely based on an obscure German physicist, but Apple has so far failed to comment on any speculation.

Re:Wow! (1)

rovingeyes (575063) | about 8 years ago | (#15692697)

So Albert Einstein is actually human...

Yes and tabloids like slashdot love to "take a look" at our idol's personal life.

Re:Wow! (4, Interesting)

megaditto (982598) | about 8 years ago | (#15692711)

A different perspective on Einstein being human:

Many thousands of scanned pages (PDF) from the FBI at []

An investigation was conducted by the FBI regarding the famous physicist because of his affiliation with the Communist Party. Einstein was a member, sponsor, or affiliated with thirty-four communist fronts between 1937 and 1954. He also served as honorary chairman for three communist organizations.

Also note in part 1b the Army claims LASERs cannot be built ;-)

Re:Wow! (1)

creimer (824291) | about 8 years ago | (#15692795)

Yeah, J. Edgar Hoover was big Einstein fan. Probably because of the hair. :)

Re:Wow! (1)

b1t r0t (216468) | about 8 years ago | (#15692768)

So Albert Einstein is actually human. For all these years, I thought he existed only in Apple's "Think Different" advertisements.

Oh yeah? Well I thought he was just this random guy that Slashdot used as the icon for their "science" section.

Offtopic. Tesla's Birthday! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692944)

With all due respect to Einstein, what I really want to see today is a story covering Nikola Tesla's 150th anniversary (he was born 150 years ago today, July 10th 1856).

Re:Wow! (1)

Filtrid (984274) | about 8 years ago | (#15693264)

Wait... maybe he isn't humain, dint they say that when he died ... during autopsy they found that his brain had a cropcycle alike shape wich seemed to show that he could think diffrently!, Sshhhh keep it quiet guys, these docs are just a detournation of the U.S gov to make us think he is humain..... thats why it took 20 years to get them released, took em 20 years to write them!, OMG lets all hide! the FBI is on us!

Please fix the title! (-1, Troll)

pen (7191) | about 8 years ago | (#15692634)

I read the title as Einstein-Husband, a joint last name. It should use an m-dash, or at least a double-hyphen, and a comma before "and":

Einstein — Husband, Lover, and Father


Einstein -- Husband, Lover, and Father

Re:Please fix the title! (-1, Troll)

abscissa (136568) | about 8 years ago | (#15692664)

You are a fucking idiot, if you are going to troll about crap like this, at least get it right... it's "em dash"...

You have serious issues if your brain was not able to figure out what the title was about.

Re:Please fix the title! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692763)

A confusing headline is less than useless. If the author can't get the headline correct, why should anybody read the article? It makes me think I'll have to slog through an article by another idiot-author who doesn't know how to use a comma.

Re:Please fix the title! (1)

Dis*abstraction (967890) | about 8 years ago | (#15692721)

Wouldn’t a colon be more appropriate, viz. “Einstein: Husband, Lover, and Father”?

Re:Please fix the title! (0, Flamebait)

megaditto (982598) | about 8 years ago | (#15692739)

And a Commie, don't forget that terrorist was a Commie.

Re:Please fix the title! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692766)

That's funny, I read it and wondered if he was a husband, lover and father to the same person. I lost a lot of respect for him, but then I realised I just couldn't comprehend sentences very well. It seems like you have the same problem.

Re:Please fix the title! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692792)

and a comma before "and":

This seems to no longer be a requirement of English grammar. It's the way most of us were taught to write, but both are allowed. "A, B, and C" -or- "A, B and C" are apparently both acceptable these days.

Re:Please fix the title! (1)

rgravina (520410) | about 8 years ago | (#15692980)

I've always thought "A, B and C" is the correct way of doing it. The "A, B, and C" method is much easier to print out of for loops, however :)

Re:Please fix the title! (2, Informative)

bohemian72 (898284) | about 8 years ago | (#15692988)

It's not exactly new. I was taught to not put the comma before the 'and' and that was about 20 years ago. It came as a surprise to me to find out that most people were taught the other way.

Re:Please fix the title! (1)

SeanAD (743296) | about 8 years ago | (#15693096)

I was taught that using the comma after the and is acceptable just as not using it is. However, since the purpose of the comma is to serve the same purpose as using "and" (in the example of A, B and C), using a comma after B is redundant and, thus, unnecessary.

Also, getting back to the topic of Einstein wishing his son had not been born, no human is above being human(and all the emotions and fallabilites that go with it). Wishing one's son wasn't born is hardly on par with removing the son's life, something many have done but Einstein did not. Hardly worth finding fault in the man.

Re:Please fix the title! (1)

shreevatsa (845645) | about 8 years ago | (#15693109)

It's not a question of "no longer"; it has been debated for several years. See Serial comma [] .

Re:Please fix the title! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15693212)

It could also be "Einstein: Husband, Lover, and Father" (don't forget that a colon can do the trick as well.) Regardless, the dash used is probably incorrect.

Biographies (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692641)

One hopes that the discovery of new correspondence will result in some more up-to-date biographies. My favourite, Albrecht Folsing's Albert Einstein: A Biography [] is only 13 years old, but recent archival findings suggest a need for an update, and these letters reinforce the need all the more.

Personally, I'd like a biography that focuses more on Einstein's role in the Cold War. Was he really a moonbat like some conservatives now accuse?

stopping smoking (4, Funny)

kisrael (134664) | about 8 years ago | (#15692646)

"You don't have to be Einstein to know smoking is bad for you... but it doesn't hurt!"

Re:stopping smoking (3, Funny)

frosty_tsm (933163) | about 8 years ago | (#15692722)

You beat me to it. I was going to try something like:

Inspirational Phrases Based on Einstein's Weaknesses:
- Even Einstein had trouble with math.
- Einstein was one of the best minds of the 20th century, but couldn't figure out a way to quit smoking.

Re:stopping smoking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692754)

Did E. smoke cigarettes? Or just the pipe we see in the famous photo?

Re:stopping smoking (1)

Jekler (626699) | about 8 years ago | (#15692840)

I find it astounding that he was so brilliant he discovered that smoking was bad 60 some odd years before we knew it. I mean wasn't that the driving force behind some of the charges against tobacco companies? That they confused us poor consumers so we had no idea it was even bad?

Re:stopping smoking (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | about 8 years ago | (#15692913)

Even one of the pre-USA English kings claimed tobacco was unhealthy. But nobody outside of the tobacco companies knew how unhealthy because the tobacco companies hid the facts about how tobacco causes cancer.

Re:stopping smoking (2, Interesting)

Rude Turnip (49495) | about 8 years ago | (#15692924)

A little known factoid about Albert Einstein's smoking habit was that he would walk down Nassau Street (the main drag in Princeton, no pun intended) looking for cigarette butts to smoke. This was when wifey cut off his supply of cigs.

misleading (3, Interesting)

preppypoof (943414) | about 8 years ago | (#15692648)

the summary seems to paint the picture that einstein was both a great physicist and a great person...but FTA:
Particular attention is dedicated to Einstein's relationship with his son, Eduard. Einstein found his son's schizophrenia difficult to accept, and on more than one occasion expresses the idea that it would have been better off if Eduard had not been born.

Re:misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692668)

Why is that misleading? You seem judgmental to me.

Re:misleading (5, Insightful)

GuruBuckaroo (833982) | about 8 years ago | (#15692709)

I have a stepbrother with schizophrenia. I've seen the effect it has on his father, my mother, and all of those around him. I've also thought that it may have been better that he never been born. Doesn't mean I wish he hadn't, but it certainly would have been easier.

For years, his father watched him deteriorate, and could get no help for him. No-one treated his problem as serious - until he put an axe in his girlfriend's back. Since then, he has spent his life in institutions (thankfully not prison, which would be no help at all). He cannot live alone, has almost no social skills, and is very easily shaken into paranoid episodes - which cause him to quit taking his meds, which make it all worse. Yet through it all, his father has remained supportive, trying his best to cope with his son's illness, and my mother as well - who volunteered into this relationship, knowing (but perhaps not really knowing) how bad it could get. They do not wish he were never born. But still, perhaps it would have been better... How would you feel, if this were your son?

Thoughts such as these do not make a person less noble. They make him human.

Re:misleading (3, Informative)

grapeape (137008) | about 8 years ago | (#15692908)

You have to remember though that Schizophrenia was not even defined until 1908 at the time the Eduard was institutionalized those suffering from Schizophrenia were just concidered flat out nuts. Freudian Theory was the "new science" and sas so outside the realm of Freudianisim that it was like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Though diagnosis was fairly defined treatment was nearly non-existant. Combine this with probablity of Albert having Aspergers himself and his feeling while not right by todays standards were clearly understandable in relation to the time and setting.

Re:misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692984)

Einstein did not have Aspergers. That's just a load of crap put forward by the Aspergers "we're better than the NTs" circle jerk^W^W support groups.
He had many relationships, and was a decent speaker and writer. That doesn't sound much like Aspergers to me.

Always misleading... (0, Flamebait)

dr7greenthumb (752231) | about 8 years ago | (#15692972)

Einstein is always depicted as an flawless icon in our pop culture. Great Physicist yes but 214,000 people might disagree on the great person part [] .

Re:Always misleading... (1)

King_TJ (85913) | about 8 years ago | (#15693046)

Comments like "he was a great person" are ALWAYS going to be subjective. Great by what standards? Overall though, I think it's safe to say that "most people" regard Einstein as a great person.
Even many of those living in Japan in WWII might not have held the atomic bomb against Einstein personally. If he hadn't agreed to work on the project, it's not like it would have just gone away. It was designed by a group of scientists, and eventually, they would have gotten a team who would come up with the same basic design with or without Einstein.

Furthermore, war is war. Even if I'm on the losing end, I don't think it makes sense to take away from the "greatness" of one among the opposing force, just because they outsmarted or overpowered me. (Many people from the Union army in our Civil War still acknowledged the "greatness" of General Robert E. Lee.)

Re:Always misleading... (1)

CheshireCatCO (185193) | about 8 years ago | (#15693169)

In as much as Einstein didn't build or drop the bomb, I'm not quite clear about why you'd blame him. He didn't even write the leter to President Roosevelt, Leo Szilard did. (Arguably nitpicky, sure.) Einstein *signed* it because there was a very real concern that Germany would get the bomb first. I don't think it speaks negatively about Einstein that he didn't want to see the Third Reich the sole owners of that kind of power. Do you?

Whether the bomb should have been dropped or not depends a lot on how much you feel it was a ploy to scare the Soviets. (Dropping the bomb was certainly a less costly (for us and for them) route to forcing the Japanese surrender than an invasion, however. That's undisputed. But, again, the question is: did we need to even do that? Historians are still arguing about what happened, so I'm hesitant to pass a very firm judgement there.)

Re:Always misleading... (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about 8 years ago | (#15693232)

The notion that we didn't need to exploit every means at our disposal to fight the Japanese is simply direspectful to the Japanese. They were a highly motivated and highly sophisticated enemy. They were (and still are) a force to be reckoned with. Second guessers tend to gloss over this.

Einstein's wife (5, Interesting)

generic-man (33649) | about 8 years ago | (#15692655) d=2964216#t2964216 []

In one letter, written in 1914, less than two years before Einstein revolutionized science with the publication of his theory of relativity, he tried to impose extraordinary conditions of marriage on his first wife, Mileva. He told her:

1) You will expect no affection from me and you will not reproach me for this;

2) You must answer me at once when I speak to you;

3) You must leave my bedroom or study at once without protesting when I ask you to go;

4) You will promise not to denigrate me in the eyes of my children, either by word or by deed.
In another letter, he wrote: "I treat my wife as an employee whom I cannot fire. I have my own bedroom and avoid being alone with her."

It's in a journal, so it's probably true. I wonder if this is actually provable with dead-tree sources (the article the poster cites is not on the web).

Re:Einstein's wife (2, Interesting)

MustardMan (52102) | about 8 years ago | (#15692802)

Wow, a blog that quotes "news articles" from a year, and doesn't even tell you what publication those articles are in. I'm convinced. I'd love to see a REAL source for these quotes - because if they are true, that dude was a right bastard.

Re:Einstein's wife (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15693163)

If it's on a blog, it must be true.

If that's not true, you should blog about it.

Re:Einstein's wife (1)

Bogtha (906264) | about 8 years ago | (#15692859)

Reminds me of this guy [] . Hey, maybe we have another Einstein in the making... or maybe not.

Re:Einstein's wife (1, Insightful)

tinkerghost (944862) | about 8 years ago | (#15692907)

You might also want to remember that in 1912, Civil War veterans were still being wed to 14 year old girls in arranged marrages.
For all of the screaming you hear about the sacred institution of marriage, it was strictly a political and financial arrangement up until about a hundred years ago or so. The only use the church has for marriage is that it allows tracking of a paternal lineage by creating a 'blessed' family tree - allowing inconvienent bastards to be tossed asside unless extrememly useful.

Re:Einstein's wife (1)

twodave (987995) | about 8 years ago | (#15693159)

I hope your aren't meaning to imply that the bible itself was written about a hundred years ago or so, because it speaks quite differently about marriage than your claim of it being "strictly a political and financial arrangement".

Re:Einstein's wife (4, Informative)

Eccles (932) | about 8 years ago | (#15693304)

You're right!

12 Biblical Principles of Marriage

      1. Marriage consists of one man and one or more women (Gen 4:19, 4:23, 26:34, 28:9, 29:26-30, 30:26, 31:17, 32:22, 36:2, 36:10, 37:2, Ex. 21:10, Judges 8:30, 1 Sam 1:2, 25:43, 27:3, 30:5, 30:18, 2 Sam 2:2, 3:2-5, 1 Chron 3:1-3, 4:5, 8:8, 14:3, 2 Chron 11:21, 13:21, 24:3).
      2. Nothing prevents a man from taking on concubines in addition to the wife or wives he may already have (Gen 25:6, Judges 8:31, 2 Sam 5:13, 1 Kings 11:3, 1 Chron 3:9, 2 Chron 11:21, Dan 5:2-3).
      3. A man might chose any woman he wants for his wife (Gen 6:2, Deut 21:11), provided only that she is not already another man's wife (Lev 18:14-16, Deut. 22:30) or his [half-]sister (Lev 18:11, 20:17), nor the mother (Lev 20:14) or the sister (Lev 18:18) of a woman who is already his wife. The concept of a woman giving her consent to being married is foreign to the Biblical mindset.
      4. If a woman cannot be proven to be a virgin at the time of marriage, she shall be stoned (Deut 22:13-21).
      5. A rapist must marry his victim (Ex. 22:16, Deut. 22:28-29) - unless she was already a fiancé, in which case he should be put to death if he raped her in the country, but both of them killed if he raped her in town (Deut. 22:23-27).
      6. If a man dies childless, his brother must marry the widow (Gen 38:6-10, Deut 25:5-10, Mark 12:19, Luke 20:28).
      7. Women marry the man of their father's choosing (Gen. 24:4, Josh.15:16-17, Judges 1:12-13, 12:9, 21:1, 1 Sam 17:25, 18:19, 1 Kings 2:21, 1 Chron 2:35, Jer 29:6, Dan 11:17).
      8. Women are the property of their father until married and their husband after that (Ex. 20:17, 22:17, Deut. 22:24, Mat 22:25).
      9. The value of a woman might be approximately seven years' work (Gen 29:14-30).
    10. Inter-faith marriages are prohibited (Gen 24:3, 28:1, 28:6, Num 25:1-9, Ezra 9:12, Neh 10:30, 2 Cor 6:14).
    11. Divorce is forbidden (Deut 22:19, Matt 5:32, 19:9, Mark 10:9-12, Luke 16:18, Rom 7:2, 1 Cor 7:10-11, 7:39).
    12. Better to not get married at all - although marriage is not a sin (Matt 19:10, I Cor 7:1, 7:27-28, 7:32-34, 7:38).

Re:Einstein's wife (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692921)

The main thing I got out of watching "Genius Week" on Biography Channel was that Einstein, Newton and the 3 others were real shits of human beings. Although presented fairly, the back-to-back nature of the genius episodes made for a nearly inescapable conclusion that is even more obvious when viewed again as repeat episodes.

Re:Einstein's wife (1)

Relic of the Future (118669) | about 8 years ago | (#15693294)

I have heard those bits of trivia before... must have been in Discover magazine's big Einstein issue last year; I think in reference to a book that should be in publication now.

CNN's Article (2, Interesting)

fdiskne1 (219834) | about 8 years ago | (#15692660)

CNN also has an article on the release of the letters: instein.reut/index.html []

Looks like he wasn't a true geek! He had six girlfriends in addition to his wife.

Re:CNN's Article (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | about 8 years ago | (#15692699)

Looks like he wasn't a true geek! He had six girlfriends in addition to his wife.
Cut him some slack. He couldn't have proper geek relationships, since this was years before the Internet and thinly disguised "women" in chatboxes.

Re:CNN's Article (5, Funny)

not already in use (972294) | about 8 years ago | (#15692732)

Start talking quantum physics to a woman and it's not long before the clothes come off.

Re:CNN's Article (5, Funny)

kisrael (134664) | about 8 years ago | (#15692777)

That's the trouble with women, the faster you know they are, the harder it is to know where to find 'em.

Re:CNN's Article (1)

Gospodin (547743) | about 8 years ago | (#15693265)

...and if that doesn't work, just wait and eventually you'll quantum tunnel through her underwear!

So does TIME (1)

blamanj (253811) | about 8 years ago | (#15692737)

The article there also includes excerpts [] from some of the letters.

Re:CNN's Article (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692959)

Maybe Einstein wasn't a geek, but anyone who cares about his old letters sure is. It's nerdy enough to be into his physics writing, but why does anyone care what he wrote to his wife and kids so long ago? Who cares?

Re:CNN's Article (1)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | about 8 years ago | (#15693025)

Seriously, I think details like this are a Good Thing, because they help counteract the stereotypes about scientists, usually either "frustrated geek who can't get laid" or the basically sexless "mad genius working alone in his lab." In the case of Einstein, who is surely the most recognizable scientist in the public mind, another, only slightly more complementary stereotype has been created: the secular saint, the gentle, wise old man who spouted (pseudo-)profound sayings but couldn't tie his shoelaces. The more people realize that scientists are, you know, people, who when they're not busy being mad geniuses pretty much do the same things everybody else does, the better.

Why should we care about Einstein's letters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692676)

...anymore than caring about some professional writer's take on physics?

Higher Resolution (4, Funny)

Kesch (943326) | about 8 years ago | (#15692687)

batch of letters fill in details to create a 'higher resolution' image of Einstein

I thought PBS already made a better resolution picture Einstein when they began broadcasting their shows in HD. Does this mean I can get him in 1080p now?

Re:Higher Resolution (1)

texaport (600120) | about 8 years ago | (#15692975)

I've got pictures [] . Wearing white pumps before Labor Day.

And it is fair game, since the article is about "shedding light on Einstein's personal life."

Einstein; inhumane? (-1, Redundant) (960072) | about 8 years ago | (#15692698)

It's amazing that such a person like Einstein, who wrote countless letters sponsoring his Jewish colleagues to get out of Germany appears to deny the same level of sympathy to his own son.

>Particular attention is dedicated to Einstein's relationship with his son,
>Eduard. Einstein found his son's schizophrenia difficult to accept,
>and on more than one occasion expresses the idea that it would have
>been better off if Eduard had not been born.

Jim [] -- Exercise for the rest of us.

Re:Einstein; inhumane? (3, Insightful)

GabrielF (636907) | about 8 years ago | (#15692815)

Actually, these new documents seem to change his public image for the better. He used to be known as a completely uninvolved and irresponsible father, but these documents show that at least later in life he really cared about his second wife and one of his kids. People change as they get older. Einstein certainly wouldn't have signed the famous letter to Roosevelt advocating the development of the atomic bomb after the war - although one could certainly argue about whether that means anything.

Re:Einstein; inhumane? (1)

Chicken04GTO (957041) | about 8 years ago | (#15692872)

you've obviously never tried to raise a child with serious impediments like schizoprhenia.
wishing the child had never been born does not make one evil, only human. and how do you draw the conclusion of "denied sympathy?" simply because he voiced a desire any parent in that situation might also voice?

... and computer gamer? (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692728)

Come on.. Throw the game-geek shut-ins a bone!

Einstine = believer of God (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692729)

Many slashdotters will talk down upon those who believe in God. Many pretend to be so superior and smart. This man had more talent in his pinky finger than the entire slashdot site. Eat it, basement-surfers..

Einstein = believer of Communism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692862)

Such lovely logic there. We talk down to you because you are totally fucking stupid.

Re:Einstine = believer of God (2, Informative)

YoungFelon (674090) | about 8 years ago | (#15692891)

This is quite a troll. However, here are some relevant quotes from wikipedia [] :
In response to the telegrammed question of New York's Rabbi Herbert S. Goldstein in 1929: "Do you believe in God? Stop. Answer paid 50 words." Einstein replied "I believe in Spinoza's God, Who reveals Himself in the lawful harmony of the world, not in a God Who concerns Himself with the fate and the doings of mankind."
"I do not think that it is necessarily the case that science and religion are natural opposites. In fact, I think that there is a very close connection between the two. Further, I think that science without religion is lame and, conversely, that religion without science is blind. Both are important and should work hand-in-hand"

Re:Einstine = believer of God (3, Interesting)

richdun (672214) | about 8 years ago | (#15692947)

For those not simply trolling, another who thinks religion and science and well connected is Gerald Schroeder, who wrote an excellent couple of books on the subject. My favorite is The Science of God [] . Schroeder is an Israeli physicist (MIT educated if memory serves), and Genesis scholar.

His main assertions are that neither top scientists nor top theologians often understand the other, and that much of the debate stems from dogged stubornness in current beliefs - think of how the Catholic Church once thought it heresy to teach the heliocentric instead of the geocentric universe, when today we know that it's really all just a matter of perspective, but that centering the universe on Earth or the Sun is not such a great idea. He really knows his science (leaves you behind very quickly if you don't grasp relativity and cosmology well, but kindly gives you a warning before diving into the particulars) and Genesis, and tries not to take a stand on one explanation or another - simply says the two aren't incompatible, especially if you acknowledge that the point of both is to seek the truth (or Truth, your choice).

"I do not believe in a personal God" (0, Flamebait)

WilliamSChips (793741) | about 8 years ago | (#15692927)

Personal God meaning the God that orders destruction the way the Christian and Muslim gods seem to do.

Re:"I do not believe in a personal God" (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | about 8 years ago | (#15693054)

Or, in nerdier terms that we can all understand, "anthropomorphic."

First Daughter? (3, Insightful)

Mr Foobar (11230) | about 8 years ago | (#15692734)

Didn't Einstein have a daughter from his first marriage that basically disappeared, and whom nobody really knows what happened to her? I always found it curious that such a smart man could also have such a lousy private life.

Do these letters say anything about her?

Re:First Daughter? (1)

NewbieProgrammerMan (558327) | about 8 years ago | (#15692971)

I always found it curious that such a smart man could also have such a lousy private life.
Funny...I recall reading about quite a few "smart people" with lousy private lives, but not that many with good ones (maybe my memory is somewhat selective, though). Some obsessed over their work too much, some lacked other skills needed to support a good private life (like money management, interpersonal skills, etc.). Just because somebody is really, really good in a particular field doesn't mean that they can handle everyday life.

Did his first wife write his papers or not? (2, Informative)

kbonin (58917) | about 8 years ago | (#15692844) []

r/e Mileva Maric

I found this fascinating - Einstein is an iconic figure, so criticism is not taken well, but I found these to be a fascinating read. No idea how good the underlying sources are, but if there is any merit to them, he may not deserve a good deal of the credit he is given. Reminds me of Tesla vs. Marconi or Tesla vs. Edison.

Re:Did his first wife write his papers or not? (1)

pla (258480) | about 8 years ago | (#15693252)

No idea how good the underlying sources are,

Not very good.

Every few years another anti-intellectual feel-good women's lib line of BS like that comes up, whether it involves Einstein's wife as some hidden genius behind her man, or Bach's wife Maria as the true composer, or that Mary Sidney ghost-wrote most of Shakespeare's works, or just a large to-do about a relatively talentless woman "chauvinistically ignored" by her peers such as Hildegarde von Bingen.

If someone finds proof, not pointless conjecture based on (in this case) nothing more solid than that Mileva Maric considered herself something of a mathematician - I'll gladly reconsider my stance. But until that magic diary entry saying "Today Mileva showed me how to get around that pesky bit in Maxwell's equations" appears, don't go mucking around with history just because some people consider it too male-heavy.

Einstein - Husband, Lover, Father and... (1)

Psiklonik (70144) | about 8 years ago | (#15692873)

....Gold Medalist Winner (Underwater Basketweaving, Speed Macrame & Theory of Relativity Triathalon)

Obligatory joke (3, Funny)

photonic (584757) | about 8 years ago | (#15692884)

I heard to following story about Einstein and his wife, who was apparently very pretty. Could be an urban legend...

Wife to Einstein:
Imagine that we would have kids together: they might be as smart as you and as pretty as me.

Einstein to wife:
But what if they would be as ugly as me and as stupid as you?

Re:Obligatory joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692977)

it wasn't his wife that his was talking too, it was some model or actress during some dinner

Re:Obligatory joke (4, Informative)

captaint (231558) | about 8 years ago | (#15693017)

Actually, it was George Bernard Shaw, not Einstein. The actual quote was closer to "But what if they had my looks and your brains?"

Re:Obligatory joke (2, Informative)

Bradlegar the Hobbit (132082) | about 8 years ago | (#15693246)

The better known context of that story is George Bernard Shaw [] and Dorothy Parker. [] Apparently Parker was into eugenics at the time and suggested to Shaw they get together and have a baby.

"With my body and your brains," she said, "she would a brilliant playwright!"

"Yes," replied Shaw, "but what if the child had my body and your brains?"

Dyslexia - The Myth Exploded? (1)

Petersko (564140) | about 8 years ago | (#15692904)

I'm willing to bet that the pages will show no evidence of dyslexia. And yet thousands of people will choose to ignore it, and go on believing that Einstein was, in fact, dyslexic.

Re:Dyslexia - The Myth Exploded? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15693078)

I would be interested to know how letters could show evidence of dyslexia.

Re:Dyslexia - The Myth Exploded? (1)

Petersko (564140) | about 8 years ago | (#15693131)

"I would be interested to know how letters could show evidence of dyslexia."

Common symptoms of dyslexia include poor handwriting, bizarre spelling, directionality and sequencing issues, and transposition of letters. When you write a few thousand pages, if you're dyslexic, it'll show.

Why Criticize? (2, Insightful)

mcguiver (898268) | about 8 years ago | (#15692951)

Sure Einstein had some faults, but don't we all? Instead of reading these correspondences with criticizem for his faults lets just be greatful that we have so much information on him so we can learn from his genius as well as his blunders. Here's to the memory of a great man!!!!

Because if his first wife was co-author of the... (3, Interesting)

CyberLord Seven (525173) | about 8 years ago | (#15693014)

...1905 papers we should give her credit in the history of physics. Her name should be as well known as his.

I personally don't care about his personal life, but I am intrigued by the idea that Marie Curie may not have been the only phenomenal woman of her generation. That women of the last century did NOT have access to a potentially phenomenal role model disturbs me.

I don't care how much pussy he got or where it came from, but my image of him is hurt IF it is true that his first wife helped him and generations of young women were deprived of a role model.

Re:Because if his first wife was co-author of the. (1)

twodave (987995) | about 8 years ago | (#15693226)

I wasn't aware that one of the necessities of having a role model scientist was that of said role model being the same sex. I wouldn't say anyone was "deprived". There are many people who don't reach the public eye yet do great things, and we aren't upset about that. There are plenty of good and bad examples alike around to discern truth and goodness from. That said, I'm not advocating the theft of anyone's work, I just think the above point was somewhat over-dramatized. I don't think all women between the ages of 8 and 80 are feeling robbed by this possibility.

Re:Why Criticize? (1)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | about 8 years ago | (#15693084)

Its easy for geeks to take the moral high ground since nobody would ever sleep with them much less get married. Here's to knocking off a peice!

over rated (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15692987)

and the award for most over rated scientist goes to.......

privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15693094)

not to pull the privacy cat out of the bag but.. at what point do we draw the line for dead people's privacy? do we just allow anyone to open up our emails after we die because some distant relative says its ok?

Re:privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15693205)

Destroy the stuff you don't want out now. Then you don't have to worry about it. If its already out, too late.
Another thing that may work as well is a will stating explicitly that you want your stuff destroyed.
Well that, and someone carrying out your request exactly.

How is this science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15693211)

I have a beef: this story is not about science. It is about history, or perhaps about history of science, but it is not about science.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?
or Connect with...

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>