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EINSTEIN & PLANCK

process information to discuss Einstein and Planck's differing views about whether science research is
removed from social and political forces

Gather information by looking in encyclopaedias, scientific and popular journals, magazines and text
books, as well as searching the Internet and CDROMs such as ENCARTA or ENCYCLOPAEDIA
BRITANNICA . Use search strings such as Political views of Albert Einstein and Life of Max
Planck.

Process your information by assessing its relevance to your topic and assessing its reliability by
comparing information from various sources.

Summarise your information to describe the social and political influences on both Einstein and Planck
at the time, and to describe the views held and actions taken by each of them.

References

Heilbron, J., 2000, THE DILEMMAS OF AN UPRIGHT MAN . Max Planck and the fortunes of German
science. With a new afterword. Cambridge (MA), London. This biography of Planck lays out the two sides of the
issue.

Rosenthal-Schneider, I., 1980, REALITY AND SCIENTIFIC TRUTH. Wayne State University Press, Detroit,
ISBN 0-81-431650-6. This is an engaging collection of essays about and correspondence with Einstein, Planck
and von Laue, by Ilse Rosenthal-Schneider, who was taught by these three in Germany before she emigrated to
Australia. She spent the second half of her life at the University of Sydney, where she taught the history and
philosophy of science.

Walker, M., 1995, NAZI SCIENCE: MYTH, TRUTH AND THE GERMAN ATOMIC BOMB . Plenum, New York,
ISBN 0-306-44941-2.

American Institute of Physics (AIP), June 2001, ALBERT EINSTEIN: IMAGE AND IMPACT, in Public
concerns , American Institute of Physics web site, USA. The following is a relevant quotation from their AIP
web site:

"THE OUTBREAK OF THE FIRST WORLD WAR BROUGHT EINSTEIN'S PACIFIST SYMPATHIES
INTO PUBLIC VIEW. NINETY-THREE LEADING GERMAN INTELLECTUALS, INCLUDING
PHYSICISTS SUCH AS PLANCK, SIGNED A MANIFESTO DEFENDING GERMANY'S WAR CONDUCT;
EINSTEIN AND THREE OTHERS SIGNED AN ANTI-WAR COUNTER MANIFESTO. HE HELPED FORM
A NON-PARTISAN COALITION THAT FOUGHT FOR A JUST PEACE AND FOR A SUPRANATIONAL
ORGANISATION TO PREVENT FUTURE WARS. AS A SWISS CITIZEN, EINSTEIN COULD FEEL FREE
TO SPEND HIS TIME ON THEORETICAL PHYSICS, BUT HE KEPT LOOKING FOR WAYS TO
RECONCILE THE OPPOSING SIDES. "MY PACIFISM IS AN INSTINCTIVE FEELING," HE SAID, "A
FEELING THAT POSSESSES ME BECAUSE THE MURDER OF MEN IS DISGUSTING. MY ATTITUDE
IS NOT DERIVED FROM ANY INTELLECTUAL THEORY BUT IS BASED ON MY DEEPEST ANTIPATHY
TO EVERY KIND OF CRUELTY AND HATRED ".

Sample information

Although there was no direct debate between Einstein and Planck on this issue, it seems that Einstein and
Planck took different views about scientists remaining in Germany during the Nazi era and continuing to do
scientific research

Planck stayed on and directed the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute. Einstein and others left Germany. Although there
was no direct correspondence between Einstein and Planck, consideration of the actions of each provides a
case study of the complexity of evaluating the moral responsibility of science to social orders
GATHER INFORMATION BY LOOKING IN ENCYCLOPAEDIAS, SCIENTIFIC AND
POPULAR JOURNALS, MAGAZINES AND TEXT BOOKS, AS WELL AS
SEARCHING THE INTERNET AND CDROMS SUCH AS ENCARTA OR
ENCYCLOPAEDIA BRITANNICA . USE SEARCH STRINGS SUCH AS POLITICAL VIEWS
OF ALBERT EINSTEIN AND LIFE OF MAX PLANCK.

CONTEXT

Initially, Einstein and Planck both had different views of regarding the relationship between scientific
matters and politics but eventually both came to realize that the two are inextricably correlated.
Despite the fact they were of academic backgrounds they had very distinctive socio-economic
backgrounds and personalities which led to their distinct ideas.

Initially, Einstein protested the WWII and the use of scientific advancements in assisting governments
to fight war, believing that science was divorced from social and political forces. However, he
eventually concluded that the two are in fact linked together as he ended up assisting with the
Manhattan project which contributed to the ending of WWII.

Planck initially held that it was just obvious that science had some political role to play in public life but
eventually he rallied against the Nazi regime, criticizing it and holding that science should be divorced
from it. Nonetheless, he recognise that there is an unavoidable connection between science and
politics, even after he attempted to separate science from politics, research science for the military
continued through other scientists. In a sense, both Planck and Einstein are symbolic of wider
discussion in science that continues even in contemporary times as to the role the government policy
in terms of scientific research but they eventually realized that science and politics cannot be divorced
from one another even if is the most ideal state of affairs.

WWII

During this time, Einstein who was Jewish had left Germany. He opposed the German militarism but
ironically actions of the Germans caused him to temporarily abandon his pacifist stance. In 1939,
Einstein was persuaded to lend his prestige by writing a letter with Leo Szilard to President Franklin D
Roosevelt in order to alert him to the possibly that Nazi Germany might be developing an atomic bomb
and urged Americans to do likewise. Roosevelt's response was the Manhattan Project which created
the first nuclear bombs, used not against the Germans who had already lost the War in Europe, but
against the Japanese at the final acts of the War in the Pacific. In his later years Einstein regretted
signing these letters Had I known that the Germans would not succeed in producing an atomic bomb,
I would not have lifted a finger.

So at the beginning of WWII, Einstein was a pacifist whilst Planck was urging the scientific community
to support the war effort. In contrast, at the beginning of WWII, Planck was resisting the militarisation
of scientific research whilst Einstein argued for scientists to aid the military in the development of
nuclear weapons. Both had justifications for their actions at the time and came to regret their support
of science for military purposes. Both became advocates of the pursuit of science for that common
god.

In conclusion, it is true to an extent that there is some difference in the views of Einstein and Planck
due to their ideas and opinons about science and politics. However, they both came to the realization
that scientific research is influenced by social and political forces.
PROCESSYOUR INFORMATION BY ASSESSING ITS RELEVANCE TO YOUR TOPIC
AND ASSESSING ITS RELIABILITY BY COMPARING INFORMATION FROM
VARIOUS SOURCES.
The information research is reliable due to the Harvard style referencing and use of variety
of secondary sources. The information and dates of events were repeated in other websites,
documents and textbooks. Hence, the information is reliable and accurate as it has been
repeated, referenced and also researched by utilizing a variety of resources.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Weber, B. (2017). What Were Albert Einstein's Political Opinions?. [online] Big Think. Available at:
http://bigthink.com/brandon-weber/book-review-einstein-and-twentieth-century-politics-a-salutary-moral-
influence [Accessed 10 May 2017].

Hscphysics.edu.au. (2017). :: AMPS - Planck and Einstein's views on science and society ::. [online]
Available at: http://www.hscphysics.edu.au/resource/PlaEin.flv [Accessed 10 May 2017].

SUMMARISE YOUR INFORMATION TO DESCRIBE THE SOCIAL AND POLITICAL


INFLUENCES ON BOTH EINSTEIN AND PLANCK AT THE TIME, AND TO
DESCRIBE THE VIEWS HELD AND ACTIONS TAKEN BY EACH OF THEM.
Although there was no direct debate between Einstein and Planck on this issue, it seems
that Einstein and Planck took differing views and opinions about the relationships between
science and political forces (scientists remaining in Germany during the Nazi era and
continuing to do scientific research for the regime) and both eventually came to a position of
accepting that the two are inevitably linked.

As a pacifist, Einstein was initially a strong believer in pure science and refused to help the
war effort with his work. However, he eventually came to realise that the two are intrinsically
linked and worked with the Manhattan Project in the later years of his life, which contributed
significantly to ending the war.

WW1: Einstein signed an anti-war manifesto which condemned the war


WW2: Einstein fled Germany as the Nazis rose to power

Planck initially felt that science definitely had a role to play in terms of politics, but
eventually he turned against the Nazi regime, criticising it, believing that science should be
separate. However, he understood that there is an unavoidable link between science and
politics. Even after Planck attempted to separate science from politics, research science for
the military continued through other scientists. Both had justification for their actions at the
time, but both came to regret advocating the support of science for military purposes. Both
became advocates of the pursuit of science for the common good.
WW1: Planck signed a manifesto supporting Germanys war conduct
WW2: Planck stayed in Germany as director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute