Cosmology at the Millennium!
A number of participants have asked about suggested reading. We polled
the instructors and assembled the following list. We have included some
highly technical reading for those that are interested, but primarily we
recommend the less technical sources.
- Weinberg, Steven. "The First Three Minutes; A Modern View of the Origin of
the Universe 2nd ed.", New York : Basic Books, July 1993. ISBN#
The first popular cosmology book, written 27 years ago by a Nobel Prize
winning particle physicist. A very readable account of the basic Big Bang
- Guth, Alan H. "The Inflationary Universe; The Quest for a New Theory of",
Addison Wesley Longman, Incorporated, Jan. 1997. ISBN# 0201149427.
Inflation is the most important idea that has migrated into cosmology from
particle physics. Guth invented inflation and here spends quite a bit of
time explaining it clearly. Personal anecdotes make it very readable.
- Hogan, C. "The Little Book of the Big Bang", New York: Springer-Verlag New
York, Incorporated, 1998. ISBN# 0387983856. A nice overview of modern
- Hubble, Edwin. "The Realm of the Nebulae", New Haven: Yale University
Press, Dec. 1982. ISBN# 0300024991.
The notion would not necessarily be to read the whole book, but just to
browse through it for background. The course is, in fact, retracing
- Overbye, Dennis. "Lonely Hearts of the Cosmos; The Story of the Scientific
Quest for the Secret of the Universe", New York: HarperCollins Publishers,
Incorporated, Jan. 1992. ISBN# 0060922710 (out of print).
- Riordan, Michael & David Schramm. "Shadow of Creation; Dark Matters & the
Structure of the Universe", New York: W. H. Freeman & Company, Oct. 1995.
- Rees, Martin J. "Before the Beginning; Our Universe & Others", Perseus
Books, Oct. 1998. ISBN# 0738200336.
- Goldsmith, Donald. "Einstein's Greatest Blunder?; The Cosmological
Constant & Other Fudge Factors in the Physics of the Universe", Cambridge:
Harvard University Press, Sept. 1995. ISBN# 0674242416.
This book describes the history of the idea of the cosmological constant,
a parameter first introduced by Einstein to "fix" his theory. It has
re-emerged time and again over the last 80 years and is now at the peak of
- Greene, Brian. "The Elegant Universe; Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions &
the Quest for the Ultimate Theory", New York: W. W. Norton & Company,
ISBN# 0393046885. This recent bestseller is about string theory, which
if it eventually emerges as the true theory of everything will have to
explain cosmology as well. Greene includes here several chapters on
cosmology and possible connections between string theory and cosmology.
More Technical Suggestions
- Bernstein, Jeremy. "Introduction to Cosmology", Paramus: Prentice Hall,
Sept. 1997. ISBN# 0139055487. Undergraduate level textbook by an award
winning popular writer. Bernstein emphasizes the connection between
particle physics and cosmology.
- Kolb, Edward W. and Michael Turner. "The Early Universe", Reading: Addison
Wesley Longman, Incorporated, Jan. 1993. ISBN# 0201626748. The standard
graduate textbook on cosmology.
- Peebles, P. J. "The Large-Scale Structure of the Universe", Princeton:
Princeton University Press, Sept. 1980. Out of Print, ISBN# 0691082391. A
deceptively brilliant book from the foremost researcher in the field.
Everything about large scale structure is in here.