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Frank Oppenheimer and His Astonishing Exploratorium

By K. C. Cole, Foreword by Murray Gell-Mann


How do we reclaim our innate enchantment with the world? Frank Oppenheimer, the younger brother of the physicist known as the "father of the atomic bomb," J. Robert Oppenheimer, was captivated by these questions, and used his own intellectual inquisitiveness to found the Exploratorium in San Francisco, a museum of human awareness that encourages play, creativity, and discovery. In Something Incredibly Wonderful Happens, K. C. Cole follows Frank Oppenheimer from his life as a physicist to his time as a cattle rancher to his founding of the Exploratorium in the hopes of promoting understanding and public participation in science as a response to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The result is a moving portrait of a dynamic and complex man who fundamentally changed the way we think about and teach science.



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