AUTHORJosephson, Paul R.
TITLEPhysics and Soviet-Western Relations in the 1920s and 1930s
PERIODICAL TITLEPhysics Today
DATE PUBLISHED1988
VOLUME NUMBER41
ISSUE NUMBERSeptember
PAGE NUMBERS54-61
ISSN0031-9228


This article recounts the inconsistent ties that Soviet physicists maintained with Western physicists prior to World War II. It suggests that the Russian Revolution and World War I caused the Soviet Union’s scientific isolation from western countries. However, organizations such as the International Education Board and the Russian Association of Physicists enabled Russian physicists to strengthen relationships with the West and to exchange scientific ideas. According to the article, a re-isolation occurred after Stalin came to power in the 1930s. The experiences of renowned Russian physicists such as Landau, Kapitsa, Vavilov, Semenov, Ioffe, and Frenkel are included to support the author’s argument.


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