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Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.  

One of our most beloved scientists, a fearless free spirit, Carlo Rovelli is also a masterful storyteller. In this collection of writings, the logbook of an intelligence always on the move, he follows his curiosity and invites us on a voyage through science, literature, philosophy and politics.   

Written with his usual clarity and wit, these pieces, most of which were first published in Italian newspapers, range widely across time and space: from Newton's alchemy to Einstein's mistakes, from Nabokov's lepidoptery to Dante's cosmology, from travels in Africa to the consciousness of an octopus, from mind-altering psychedelic substances to the meaning of atheism. Charming, pithy and elegant, this book is the perfect gateway to the universe of one of the most influential physicists of our age.  

©2020 Carlo Rovelli (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about There Are Places in the World Where Rules Are Less Important than Kindness

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How joined up science can improve the world

I like to read / listen to pop science books and this is one of the best in recent years. Italian experimental physicist Carlo Rovelli might not be known to many but he has some original thoughts, and how many of us can claim to have had an original thought? Firstly he sees science as a continuum from Aristole to Galileo to Einstein arguing that none of them were right or wrong but that each presented the best explanation of the physical world in the time they lived. Rovelli attempts to break down barriers between the different scientific disciplines claiming that more progress could be make if we do not pigeon as we are all ultimately attempting to measure and explain the world so we can control it. He argues, somewhat surprisingly, that psychology is the ultimate science rather than physics or philosophy. The book consists of stand alone chapters that read like well thought out articles, some of them going off piste from what you might expect, for example in one piece he argues that politically the far right is motivated through fear and in another he argues against the purpose of countries as national boundaries serve little purpose other than to divide us. He poses some existential questions such as "why does war exist?" and at times, for example the section on flying donkeys can get a little abstract. Slightly contradictorily he scoffs at some traditional medicines such as Tibetan practices as he considers these are not scientifically proven but then champions the use of LSD and other psychedelics even though there is only scant formal scientific proof of their effectiveness. This is an engaging read / listen, and although I did not find myself agreeing with everything included, it did make me think.

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Moving, Beautiful and Erudite

The stories and articles presented in “There are Places in the World where Rules are Less important than kindness” are as imaginative and informative as you could ask for. The short nature of each chapter also makes this perfect for the inquisitive mind on the move. Would whole heartedly recommend.

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TOK love story for your mortal soul.

loved every line of this. no matter what your position, ethics, background this is a super read!

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Highly reconnected

A thought provoking book, beautifully read and rebuilt accessible despite the at times profound subject matter. Highly reconnected.

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mind numbing

I seen described as modern day equivalent to Aurelius musings and have never been so misled in my life, i struggled to finish

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  • amapolasygolondrinas
  • 14-11-20

Mind blowing, mind expandin

This is a book i thoroughly enjoyed . The narrator is perfect , attuned to the underlying emotions of the author, and the sequence of chapters ending with one on the pandemic create a beautiful interwoven fabric of lucidity science and fierce determination to understand and live life in consequence. Utterly inspiring.