Twenty-five years after its initial publication, The Making of the Atomic Bomb remains the definitive history of nuclear weapons and the Manhattan Project. From the turn-of-the-century discovery of nuclear energy to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan, Richard Rhodes’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book details the science, the people, and the socio-political realities that led to the development of the atomic bomb. This sweeping account begins in the 19th century, with the discovery of nuclear fission, and continues to World War Two and the Americans’ race to beat Hitler’s Nazis. That competition launched the Manhattan Project and the nearly overnight construction of a vast military-industrial complex that culminated in the fateful dropping of the first bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Reading like a character-driven suspense novel, the book introduces the players in this saga of physics, politics, and human psychology—from FDR and Einstein to the visionary scientists who pioneered quantum theory and the application of thermonuclear fission, including Planck, Szilard, Bohr, Oppenheimer, Fermi, Teller, Meitner, von Neumann, and Lawrence. From nuclear power’s earliest foreshadowing in the work of H.G. Wells to the bright glare of Trinity at Alamogordo and the arms race of the Cold War, this dread invention forever changed the course of human history, and The Making of The Atomic Bomb provides a panoramic backdrop for that story. Richard Rhodes’s ability to craft compelling biographical portraits is matched only by his rigorous scholarship. Told in rich human, political, and scientific detail that any reader can follow, The Making of the Atomic Bomb is a thought-provoking and masterful work.
A history of the origins and development of the American atomic bomb program during WWII. Begins with the scientific developments of the pre-war years. Details the role of the U.S. government in conducting a secret, nationwide enterprise that took science from the laboratory and into combat with an entirely new type of weapon. Concludes with a discussion of the immediate postwar period, the debate over the Atomic Energy Act of 1946, and the founding of the Atomic Energy Commission. Chapters: the Einstein letter; physics background, 1919-1939; early government support; the atomic bomb and American strategy; and the Manhattan district in peacetime. Illustrated.
Here, for the first time, in a brilliant, panoramic portrait by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb, is the definitive, often shocking story of the politics and the science behind the development of the hydrogen bomb and the birth of the Cold War. Based on secret files in the United States and the former Soviet Union, this monumental work of history discloses how and why the United States decided to create the bomb that would dominate world politics for more than forty years.
In 1974 India exploded an atomic device. In May 1998 the new right-wing BJP Government set off several more, encountering in the process domestic plaudits, but also international condemnation and possibly sparking a new nuclear arms race in South Asia. What explains the enthusiasm of the Indian public for nuclear power? This book is the first serious historical account of the development of India's nuclear programme and of how the bomb came to be made. The author questions orthodox interpretations implying that it was a product of international conflict. Instead, he argues that the explosions had nothing to do with national security as conventionally understood and everything to do with establishing the legitimacy of the independent nation-state. He demonstrates the linkages that exist between the two apparently separate discourses of national security and national development. The result is a remarkable book that breaks new ground in integrating comparative politics, international relations and cultural studies. It is also a pioneering exploration of the sociology of science in a Third World context and offers a radically new argument about the Indian state and its post-colonial crisis of legitimacy.
The ramifications of the Manhattan Project are still with us to this day. The atomic bombs that came out of it brought an end to the war in the Pacific, but at a heavy loss of life in Japan and the opening of a Pandora's box that has tested international relations. This book traces the history of the Manhattan Project, from the first glimmerings of the possibility of such a catastrophic weapon to the aftermath of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It profiles the architects of the bomb and how they tried to reconcile their personal feelings with their ambition as scientists. It looks at the role of the politicians and it includes first-hand accounts of those who experienced the effects of the bombings.
Describes the scientific discoveries and political circumstances behind the decision to develop atomic weapons; recounts the history of the Manhattan Project; and examines the influence of nuclear weapons on the modern world.
Richard Rhodes’s 1986 Pulitzer Prize-winning book The Making of the Atomic Bomb narrates the years preceding the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. It focuses on how a group of international physicists uncovered nature’s potential for destruction through advances in nuclear physics and quantum theory. They harnessed the power of physics to develop the first atomic bombs... Purchase this in-depth summary to learn more.
During World War II, nations raced to construct the worldOCOs first nuclear weapon that would determine the future of the world. The Manhattan Project, one of the most significant achievements of the 20th century, was the culmination of AmericaOCOs war effort. Today, although the issue of nuclear weapons frequently dominates world politics, few are aware of the history behind its development. Part I of this book, comprised of papers from the Atomic Heritage FoundationOCOs Symposium on the Manhattan Project, recounts the history of this remarkable effort and reflects upon its legacy. Most of the original structures of the Manhattan Project have been inaccessible to the public and in recent years, have been stripped of their equipment and slated for demolition. Part II proposes a strategy for preserving these historical artifacts for the public and future generations."
On the seventy-fifth anniversary of the first atomic bomb, discover new reflections on the Manhattan Project from President Barack Obama, hibakusha (survivors), and the modern-day mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The creation of the atomic bomb during World War II, codenamed the Manhattan Project, was one of the most significant and clandestine scientific undertakings of the 20th century. It forever changed the nature of war and cast a shadow over civilization. Born out of a small research program that began in 1939, the Manhattan Project would eventually employ nearly 600,000 people and cost about $2 billon ($28.5 billion in 2020) -- all while operating under a shroud of complete secrecy. On the 75th anniversary of this profoundly crucial moment in history, this newest edition of The Manhattan Project is updated with writings and reflections from the past decade and a half. This groundbreaking collection of essays, articles, documents, and excerpts from histories, biographies, plays, novels, letters, and oral histories remains the most comprehensive collection of primary source material of the atomic bomb.