L'introduction de la relativité en France : 1905-1922

Abstract : The subject of the present thesis is to determine the rythms and the different modes of the diffusion of restrictive relativity took in France from 1905 to 1922. The first part deals with the context in which this very diffusion took place, particularly insisting on the reformation of science education at the beginning of the century and the impact of the first world war, the second part describes the rythms of the diffusion and points out its different steps : from 1905 to 1910 the subject was kept silent ; a first diffusion can nevertheless be noticed by means of two distinctive paths from 1910 to 1914. A first one, through the consequences of the new theorie on space and time ; a second one through its consequences on ether concept. Its diffusion however was stopped by the war, the developments of general relativity mixed up the message of restrictive relativity. The third part is an analysis of how the theory was introduced to nonspecialists and how the latter understood it. Starting from its diffusion to its receipt, the third part particularly emphasizes the remaining misunderstanding as to the way this theory had been exposed ; it also points out the part Poincaré played when dealing with the crisis in the field of mathematics physics in the early 1900's and the way the solution brought by Einstein was understood. The issue of this research unveils two major facts : first, Poincaré has been a passive hindrance to the diffusion of relativity in France ; second, this first diffusion of the theory doesn't really enable us to draw a new image of the world that could be accessible to mankind.
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Vincent Borella. L'introduction de la relativité en France : 1905-1922. Histoire, Philosophie et Sociologie des sciences. Université Nancy 2, 1998. Français. ⟨NNT : 1998NAN21024⟩. ⟨tel-01775370⟩

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