Isidor I. Rabi

Isidor I. Rabi, 1962

Isidor Isaac Rabi (1898 - 1988) achieved a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Cornell University in 1919, and received his PhD at Cornell in 1927. He spent the next two years in Europe on a fellowship, working with such eminent physicists as Niels Bohr, Werner Heisenberg, Wolfgang Pauli, and Otto Stern. He then became a Columbia faculty member spent the remainder of his career at the University.

In 1930, Rabi researched the nature of the force binding protons to atomic nuclei. This research eventually led to the creation of the molecular-beam magnetic-resonance detection method, for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1944. In 1940, Rabi took leave from Columbia to work as Associate Director of the Radiation Laboratory at MIT on the development of radar. During this time, it is believed that Rabi served as a visiting consultant to the top secret Los Alamos Laboratory. Following World War II, Rabi co-founded Brookhaven National Laboratory and CERN, and then served as Science Advisor to US President Harry Truman.


“The Evolution of Science in Twentieth Century America.” March 6, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.
“Science and Public Policy.” March 8, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.
“Education for Americans In Our Pluralistic Society.” March 13, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.
“The Education of A Western Man.” March 15, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.
“Physics: The Science In Permanent Revolution.” March 20, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.
“The Dilemma of Modern Physics.” March 22, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.


“Education in a Pluralistic Society.” March 16, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.
Moderator: Dr. Charles H. Townes, MIT Provost. Speaker: Elting E. Morison, Professor of Industrial History, MIT. Panelists: Dr. Paul A. Freund, Professor of Law, Harvard, Professor Francis Friedman, Director of the Science Teaching Center, Dr. Gerald Holton, Harvard Professor of Physics, Dr. Edwin H. Land, Visiting Institute Professor and President of the Polaroid Company, and Dr. Paul A. Samuelson, Professor of Economics, MIT.

“The Dilemma of Modern Physics.” March 22, 1962. Kresge Auditorium.
Moderator: Dr. Bruno B. Rossi. Professor of Physics, MIT. Speaker: Dr. Edward M. Purcell, Gerhard Gade University Professor, Harvard University. Panelists: Dr. 1. 1. Rabi, Columbia University: Dr. Martin Deutsch, MIT: Dr. Donald A. Glaser Visiting Professor of Biophysics, MIT; Professor Narman F. Ramsey, Harvard University: and Professor Cyril S. Smith, MIT.