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Book Cover
Author Josephson, Paul R

Title Lenin's laureate : Zhores Alferov's life in communist science / Paul R. Josephson
Published Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, ©2010


Description 1 online resource (307 pages) : illustrations
Series Transformations
Transformations (M.I.T. Press)
Summary "In 2000, the Russian scientist Zhores Alferov shared the Nobel Prize for Physics for his discovery of the heterojunction, a semiconductor device the practical applications of which include light-emitting diodes, rapid transistors, and the microchip. Alferov's Nobel Prize was the culmination of a career that spanned the eras of Stalin, Khrushchev, and Gorbachev--and continues today in the post-communist Russia of Putin and Medvedev. In Lenin's Laureate, the historian Paul Josephson tells the story of Alferov's life and work and examines the bureaucratic, economic, and ideological obstacles to doing statesponsored scientific research in the Soviet Union." "Lenin and the Bolsheviks built strong institutions for scientific research, rectifying years of neglect under the Tsars. Later generations of scientists, including Alferov and his colleagues, reaped the benefits, achieving important breakthroughs: the first nuclear reactor for civilian energy, an early fusion device, and, of course, Sputnik. Josephson's account of Alferov's career reveals the strengths and weaknesses of Soviet science, a schizophrenic environment of cutting-edge research and political interference. Alferov, born into a family of Communist loyalists, joined the Party in 1967. He supported Gorbachev's reforms in the 1980s, but later became frustrated by the recession-plagued post-communist state's failure to fund scientific research adequately. An elected member of the Russian parliament since 1995, he uses his prestige as a Nobel laureate to protect Russian science from further cutbacks." "Drawing on extensive archival research and the author's own discussions with Alferov, Lenin's Laureate offers a unique account of Soviet science, presented against the backdrop of the USSR's turbulent history from the revolution through perestroika."--Jacket
Analysis HUMANITIES/Biography & Autobiography
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes English
Print version record
Subject Alferov, Zh. I
Alferov, Zh. I.
Physicists -- Russia (Federation) -- Biography
Physics -- Russia (Federation) -- History
Science and state -- Russia (Federation) -- History
BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY -- Science & Technology.
SCIENCE -- History.
HISTORY -- Europe -- Russia & the Former Soviet Union.
Science and state
Russia (Federation)
Genre/Form Biographies
Form Electronic book
LC no. 2010005431
ISBN 9780262289528