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Journal of Superconductivity

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 599–623 | Cite as

Looking Back

  • E. I. Rashba
Article

Abstract

Some of the organizers of this workshop advised me to write an autobiographical essay for this issue of the journal. First, I was not excited about this idea. I did not think that any details of my personal biography would be of interest for anybody beyond my family. However, later on I realized that I am apparently the last witness (or one of few last witnesses) of the growth and the subsequent decay of the physical community in Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine, in the post-WWII years. It made a visible contribution to condensed matter physics and had a good promise for further development but had been strangled by the party apparatus. Huge material investments, opening new institutes and appointing hundreds of people could not compensate for the harm that was produced by suppressing those few who already were, or could become in the next generations, scientific leaders of the community. The artificial isolation from the international community was a different but closely related aspect of the same problem. To hold to facts as close as possible, I concentrated on the events that are directly related to my professional life because I knew all the related details and still remember many of them. These events reflect long-term tendencies and numerous zig-zags in the life of our community. For this reason I believe that they may be of general interest and separated from the personal details and emotions. I want those who may wish to read this essay to detach the pronoun “I” that appears in the text from me personally and concentrate on the epoch that I tried to reflect impartially, to the extent a human being can do it.

spin–orbit exciton Bogoliubov Landau Pekar Tamm 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. I. Rashba
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PhysicsSUNY at BuffaloBuffalo
  2. 2.Department of Physics, MITCambridge

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