Cannon Beach Library

Cannon Beach Reads: Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! (Adventures of a Curious Character) (Virtual Event)

Join us for lively literary discussion! Cannon Beach Reads will start off 2022 with a discussion, via Zoom, of Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!: Adventures of a Curious Character, the entertaining memoir written by Richard P. Feynman. Feynman, a theoretical physicist and well-known eccentric, was ranked as the seventh-greatest physicist of all time in a survey of his peers in 1999. Feynman, who helped in the development of the atomic bomb, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1965 for contributions to the development of quantum electrodynamics and was cited for his service on the Rogers Commission which investigated the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster in 1986. He is credited with pioneering the field of quantum computing and introducing the idea of top down nanotechnology.

One of Feynman’s goals was to popularize physics, making it accessible to non-scientists, through books and lectures (for example, his talk on top down nanotechnology, There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom). A wildly popular professor, Feynman’s undergraduate lectures were published in the three-volume The Feynman Lectures on Physics.

Feynman was so well known during his career, that his life was portrayed in film, theater, opera and graphic novels. Matthew Broderick portrayed him in the biopic Infinity and Alan Alda played him on Broadway in the playQED. His life was also the subject of an opera and a graphic novel, each titled Feynman.Fictional physicist Sheldon Cooper, of The Big Bang Theory, is presented as an avid Feynman fan.

Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! is not a traditional autobiography. Instead it is a collection of anecdotes and reminiscences, including his reminiscences about discussing atomic physics with Einstein, his fascination with safecracking, his studies of various languages and his efforts to learn to play the drums. Critics have called Feynman “a storyteller in the tradition of Mark Twain,” and described this memoir as being “funny, brilliant, bawdy” and “enormously entertaining,”

Bob Lundy will lead the discussion, which will take place via Zoom, on Wednesday, January 19, beginning at 7 p.m. Cannon Beach Reads plans to meet via Zoom on the third Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. until in-person meetings are possible again. Email Joe Bernt at if you want to join the discussion. New members are always welcome!




PO Box 486
131 N. Hemlock
Cannon Beach, OR 97110-0486


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