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Analysis of Film "Einstein's Letter" Essay

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The film titled “Einstein’s Letter” depicts the historical events that took place beginning the summer of 1939; world renowned physicist Albert Einstein agreed to sign a letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt that would change the world forever. He was visited at his Long Island home by Hungarian physicists Leo Szilard and Eugene Wigner in order to get his help in urging the President to build a nuclear bomb; they felt that the building of this atomic bomb and the treat of its detonation would save the world. He presumed that a big, scary weapon would deter war and force nations into peace. Szilard needed Einstein’s help to set his theory in motion. Driven by intense fear of the Nazi Germany having an unbeatable lead on the development of these atomic bombs and disturbed that America had done nothing at that point, Szilard went full speed ahead with his plans to get an atomic bomb completed. At that time no one knew who Szilard or Wigner were but almost everyone knew of Albert Einstein. They sought out Einstein that sunny summer day because of his scientific reputation. Einstein would play an intricate role in getting the powerful officials to take them seriously. The first signed letter, delivered on October 11, 1939, did as intended when it reached President Roosevelt. He took immediate action by ordering a meeting with the top military officials and leading atomic scientist to discuss the feasibility of what it took to built and actual atomic bomb. Albert Einstein was invited to this meeting; he declined because of his status as a serious pacifist. Szilard and his team received the “go ahead” from the government for the atomic project, but were later denied the funds they were promised. In a second letter (black...


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...pective, we see that everything in our society has a function, whether it is negative or positive. Throughout this film many things were functioning together to create social change. Conflict theorist focus on the power the capitalist had over the resources that were needed for the project to continue. It took the order of the President, a higher power, to make them work with the physicists. For the best understanding of the events on the film, all the different perspectives had to be formulated and then combined. Only then can there be a bigger and better view of the whole picture.


Works Cited
Henslin, James M. (2006). Essentials of Sociology: A Down-to-Earth Approach. 7th ed. Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon.

Williams, Marco. 2006. “10 Days That Unexpectedly Changed America” [videorecording]/ a History Channel Production. New York: A&E Television Networks.


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