Steven Weinberg (b. 1933)

American physicist. Born in New York City, Weinberg earned his B.A. at Cornell University, studied at Copenhagen’s Niels Bohr Institute, and in 1957 completed his Ph.D. in physics at Princeton University. His research in particle physics—the study of natural forces that govern the material universe at the very smallest scale—won Weinberg the Nobel Prize in 1979. Since 1982 he has taught at the University of Texas at Austin. His writings include two of the most important textbooks in contemporary science: Gravitation and Cosmology (1972) and The Quantum Theory of Fields (1995, 1996, 2003). The First Three Minutes: A Modern View of the Origin of the Universe (1977, 1993) is one of the most highly regarded explanations for the non specialist of current scientific thinking in cosmology. An outspoken atheist, Weinberg has written that “the more the universe seems comprehensible, the more it seems pointless.” See also nobelprize.org.