Posted on 06/13/2018 at 09:54 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek
The recently published diaries of theoretical physicist and humanitarian icon Albert Einstein include unpleasant commentary about Asia.
Einstein toured Asia in the 1920s and had especially racist observations about the Chinese, which you can read in the Guardian’s article about the diaries.
His travels brought him in contact with Japanese, Indians, and Sri Lankans as well.
Ze’ev Rosenkranz, senior editor and assistant director of the Einstein Papers Project at the California Institute of Technology, edited and translated The Travel Diaries of Albert Einstein.
The manuscripts were previously only available in German, with small bits translated into English.
Rosenkranz told the Guardian that Einstein’s views were neither usual nor unusual for that era.
“That’s usually the reaction I get – ‘we have to understand, he was of the zeitgeist, part of the time’ – but I think I tried here and there to give a broader context. There were other views out there, more tolerant views,” he said.
Categories: Today in Books