Surely You Are Joking, Mr. Feynman - Four Levels | The Flax-Golden Tales

Richard P. Feynaman, USA (1918 – 1988)

Surely You Are Joking, Mr. Feynman - Four Levels | The Flax-Golden Tales

Surely You Are Joking, Mr. Feynman

Literal Comprehension: After passing his under-graduation from MIT taking Physics, the narrator Mr. Feynman was suggested to go to other colleges by Professor Slater to understand the rest of the world but he was quite unfamiliar in the system of Princeton College. Then Feynman went to Princeton College where everything was fully formal. On the first day, Eisenhart gave new student tea party. Feynman was not a mannered and formal person who answered to have both lemon and cream teas. She told Feynman was joking about it by saying ‘’Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynman’’ because it was taken as a social error.

After that, he went to Cyclotron where everything was left open to do. He started to take part in philosophical discussion and sometimes in biological groups as well as physics classes. He spent lots of time in biological work. He also did research on a phase and discovered the double mutation process. His discovery made him popular among biology students. Later he was invited to Harvard University to give a lecture for biology. Despite his hard work and discovery of new thing in biology, he could not be satisfied. Though he knew and did a lot about biology and other subjects, his actual interest was in physics. So he expected he would go back to physics sooner.

Interpretation: This essay tells us that there should be a thirst of knowledge and progress in one’s mind to get their intended things. For it, one should also pay great labor to be successful in the chosen field. This essay suggests how education can be gained and what can be the best technique. Memorization and subject of inner interest are different and opposite things, the former is not the productive one. It also tells about the significance of the interdisciplinary subject study. It portrays that education is the only key to learn about manner, culture, and knowledge in any multiple subjects.

Critical thinking: It is sure that for the readers this essay is quite difficult to understand by the students beyond science faculty, it is because it contains the jargons that are used in scientific text. The crux if the essay is easier, but the presentation and language is, so one must be multidisciplinary to understand it because there is description about biology, physics, philosophy and as well as about other subjects. The passion of the writer for study and progress even in lack of tools and resources gives a good lesson to us. The writer became multidisciplinary in the lack of tools and resources. Is it possible to be multi-talented for all people in the lack of tools and resources? If it is difficult for the students of other faculty who are not from a science background, why is this essay kept here in the management faculty?

Assimilation: Thought the presentation and content of this essay are difficult to understand, it taught me a lesson that one should be dynamic and should have continuous effort to achieve your desired goal though you may lack the physical resources or somebody flatters you.

According to different situations and societies, Prof. Slater’s suggestions to go to another college to meet the rest of the world is to try to understand multiple subjects and sectors of life. I used to be bounded in studying of my subjects only but after reading this I came to know that nothing can be done with a limited boundary of knowledge and people should be versatile/multidisciplinary in terms our knowledge.

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