AUTHORTeller, Edward
TITLEBetter a Shield than a Sword: Perspectives on Defense and Technology
PUBLISHERThe Free Press
CITYNew York, NY
DATE PUBLISHED1987
ISBN0-02-932461-0


This book, partly autobiographical, contains over 30 short essays that examine physicist Edward Teller’s involvement in the nuclear program of the United States, nuclear issues, and the state of the world. The first of five parts evaluates effectiveness and feasibility of defense technologies, such as those of the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). The second part relates Teller’s involvement in the Manhattan Project and in the development of the hydrogen bomb, including reminiscences about physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer. The third part details troubles of a nuclear world, including environmental effects of a possible global nuclear war; in that part, Teller presents a detailed disagreement with the concept of nuclear winter. The final two parts underscore the conflicting interests and responsibilities of atomic science, as well as Teller’s beliefs that scientific advancement and education are necessary for the survival of democracies.


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