FEYNMAN, RICHARD P. | THE CHARACTER OF PHYSICAL LAW. SIGNED AND INSCRIBED BY RICHARD FEYNMAN AS "RITTY"
FEYNMAN, RICHARD P.
The Character of Physical Law. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 1983
8vo. Original wrappers, lightly soiled.
SIGNED AND INSCRIBED BY RICHARD FEYNMAN TO A CHILDHOOD FRIEND: "TO MY VERY OLD FRIEND AND/ FAR ROCKAWAY NEIGHBOR OF/ OVER HALF A CENTURY AGO./ RITTY FEYNMAN. ESALEN. OCT. 10, 1984." Very rare, we have seen no other signed copies of this book come to market, and no book by Feynman to be signed with his childhood nickname "Ritty."
Later edition of this work, consisting of seven lectures delivered by Feynman on the laws of physics at Cornell University in 1964 and recorded for television by the BBC, as part of the Messenger Lectures Series. From 1983-1986, Feynman did a series of "Idiosyncratic Thinking" workshops at the legendary Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California. In 1984, the workshop of 1984, when Feynman signed this copy, he delivered an updated version of his famous lecture "There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom", which can be viewed on YouTube under the title "Richard Feynman "Tiny Machines" Nanotechnology Lecture.
Feynman never wrote a book in the conventional sense. The hugely influential scientific monographs published under his name were in fact transcriptions of his lectures made by students or other physicists in attendance: Quantum Electrodynamics (1961), Theory of Fundamental Processes (1961), The Feynman Lectures on Physics (1963), The Character of Physical Law (1965), Photon-Hadron Interactions (1972), and Statistical Mechanics (1972). Even his two highly successful volumes of popular memoir—Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! (1985) and What Do You Care What Other People Think? (1988)—were transcribed from taped conversations made by Ralph Leighton, a fellow bongo player.