Nima Arkani-Hamed

The Power of Principles: Physics Revealed is based on an in-depth filmed conversation between Howard Burton and Nima Arkani-Hamed, faculty member at the renowned Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. Prof. Arkani-Hamed is one of today’s leading particle physicists. This extensive Ideas Roadshow conversation explores how we discover the laws of nature, the “scientific method”, the relation between theory and experiment and how we can push our understanding well beyond where experiments can currently reach.

With his unbridled enthusiasm and engaging eloquence, Nima takes us inside the world of a working theoretical physicist, sharing his frustration at some of the ways that physics is communicated to the general public while revealing how he and his colleagues hope to be steered towards the truth without experiment to guide them.

This carefully-edited book includes an introduction, Beyond Nymphs, Dryads and Leprechauns, and questions for discussion at the end of each chapter:

  1. Physics Time Management – Giving it your all
  2. The Problem with Popularization – Not what it used to be
  3. In Feynman’s Footsteps – A genuine challenge
  4. Describing Reality – The latest thing vs. the eternally significant
  5. A Timeless Community – Walking with Galileo, aided by Weinberg
  6. Against Relativism – Science, culture, and truth with a capital “T”
  7. Strongly Constrained – The effect of combining relativity and quantum mechanics
  8. In Search of a Formula – Predicting clicks and theoretical candidates
  9. A Principled Example – The inevitability of the Higgs
  10. Supersymmetry – Platonic convictions
  11. Reacting Precipitously – The sad tale of the supposedly superluminal neutrinos
  12. Tangled Pillars – The relationship between relativity and quantum theory
  13. The Pull of the Truth – Plunging in, in the right vicinity
  14. Choosing a Better Description – Thinking your way into the future
  15. Beyond Space-Time – Mathematics to the rescue?



Available in electronic format on all major booksellers, including:





The Power of Principles: Physics Revealed is also part of the five-part Ideas Roadshow Collection, Conversations About Physics, Volume 1, which is available in both paperback and electronic format.

You can access the video of the conversation, The Power of Principles, Part I and Part II, on Vimeo, here: https://vimeo.com/ondemand/thepowerofprinciples.