A fictional collage of stories dreamed by Albert Einstein in 1905, when he worked in a patent office in Switzerland. As the defiant but sensitive young genius is creating his theory of relativity, a new conception of time, he imagines many possible worlds. In one, time is circular, so that people are fated to repeat triumphs and failures over and over. In another, time is a nightingale, sometimes trapped by a bell jar.
Reviewed by Tania Hershman in Slightly Foxed Issue 51.
A Purple Gentian
I read Einstein’s Dreams (1992), by Alan Lightman, not long after it was published. I was in my mid-20s, freshly released from a degree in maths and physics I had understood very little of, and...Read more