Modern Physics and 'The Illusion of Understanding'

The big news about the Higgs boson has led to reflection--by me, for example--on whether laypeople, or for that matter physicists themselves, can truly understand the reality described by theories of modern physics.

Here is a really good exchange, between two of America's best science writers, that bears on that question. While acknowledging the limits on our intuitive comprehension of things like the Higgs boson, they press against those limits and shed some light on the subject.

You can watch the whole conversation on BhTV.

Presented by

Robert Wright is the author of The Evolution of God and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. He is a former senior editor at The Atlantic.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

What LBJ Really Said About Selma

"It's going to go from bad to worse."

Video

Does This Child Need Marijuana?

Inside a family's fight to use marijuana oils to treat epilepsy

Video

A Miniature 1950s Utopia

A reclusive artist built this idealized suburb to grapple with his painful childhood memories.

Video

Why Principals Matter

Nadia Lopez didn't think anybody cared about her school. Then the Internet heard her story.

More in National

Just In