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Canadian Plays - Einstein's Gift - Essay Example

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Haber was essentially patriotic but ambitious and so got converted to Christianity when in his twenties, expecting a more peaceful existence and a better life. He was ambitious to make progress in life and so renounced his Jewish religion so he could gain a long tenure at any of…
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Canadian Plays - Einsteins Gift
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Canadian Plays Order No: 346092 No. of pages – 2 Why does Haber get baptized? Why is this so important? Haber was essentially patriotic but ambitious and so got converted to Christianity when in his twenties, expecting a more peaceful existence and a better life. He was ambitious to make progress in life and so renounced his Jewish religion so he could gain a long tenure at any of the German universities. However, this was not to be as he was ridiculed and scorned by the Nazis who considered him to be essentially a Jew.
2. What and where is the climax of the play?
The climax of the play is the realization experienced by both scientists – Einstein’s doubts and moral questioning forces him to renounce his German citizenship and migrate to the United States in 1933, but finally it is his theory of relativity that was made use of to make the atom bomb by the America he had adopted or where he tried to find solace.
Haber on the other hand was extremely patriotic though ambitious, but though he converted himself to Christianity was rudely scorned by the Nazis.
3. Is Otto a tragic figure? Why or why not?
James Wallert who is Otto in the play and who has been Haber’s assistant for quite a long time is very persuasive in all his dealings. He had helped Haber in all his work but when he did not receive any credit for his actions, he left Haber and joined the opposite party.
4. What is the significance of Habers Uncle Ludwig and the Samurai stories?
Haber makes use of his own uncle Ludwig who was supposedly killed in 1874 in Japan by a Samurai warrior. He makes use of these incidents to create a running anecdote for the plays progression. The end of this incident has his Uncle Ludwig and the samurai getting killed by their own weapons.
5. Identify two conflicts between Haber and Einstein.
Both Haber and Einstein were long distance friends for a good number of years. Though both of them were scientists they had conflicting views on Science and religion. While one of them believed in pure Science, the other believed in the practicality of Science, One such thing was religion. Though neither of the two were in any way religious, yet they had conflicting ideas on religion. Einstein did not deny his faith but never practiced it either, while Haber used his religion to try to satisfy his ambition by converting himself to Christianity.
6. What is Einsteins gift? Explain it in as many layers as you can.
Though Einstein was not too religious and did not follow his religion well, yet, Haber presented him with the gift of a ‘kippah’ and a prayer shawl. The ‘kippah’ meaning ‘covering’ is the headdress (skull cap) of the Jewish men which according to the Jewish tradition symbolizes ‘moral perfection’ as seen in God Almighty. In the beginning, this tradition of the ‘kippah’ was followed by the Jewish priests but gradually it came to be adopted by even the lay people. The ‘kippah’ now symbolizes piety and an awareness that God is ever present with us and is worn by anyone who reads their Holy Book the ‘Torah’.
7. Einstein says on p.5 "Was a time...I believed." What does he mean, and what is the larger significance of this in the play?
Einstein has stated the following words - “Was a time women spoke music. And men thought poetry… Was a time I believed” (pg.5) This sentence speaks about ‘belief’ and in the larger picture of the play this idea of belief points to Haber and his actions. While everyone including his wife Clara believed that he was contributing towards Science to do something good for mankind, she is rudely shocked when he uses Science to kill his enemies. Haber denies his beliefs (conversion) to satisfy his ambitions. He is finally scorned and turned out of the country he loved so much.
Bonus Qs. Explain how the use of the Atomic Bomb (in Hiroshima and Nagasaki) changed the world.
On August 6th 1945, a devastating bomb was dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan. It was one of the most horrifying events that changed the world to an unimaginable extent. It was on this fateful day that the United States took a decision to engage themselves in aerial warfare by making use of an ultimate weapon the atom bomb to be dropped on the unsuspecting island of Hiroshima. The power of the blast was so devastating that it wiped out thousands of civilians and destroyed property whose worth could not be measured. The death toll incurred by this immensely destructive blast was approximately 700,000 people. In trying to put an end to the hideous WWII, Japan had to sacrifice itself in a big way. The decision was a combined consent of the people who wielded power – Political, Scientific and Military.
References
Einstein’s Gift – A Curtain Review
www.curtainup.com/einsteinsgift.html
Einstein’s Gift
www.everything2.com/title/Einstein%2527s+Gift
The Bomb that changed the world
http://www.thefinertimes.com/WW-II-Air/the-bomb-that-changed-the-world.html Read More
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