* UP to Leo Szilard Online

Remembering Leo Szilard

In RealAudio® *

Now featuring the voices of:
Aaron Novick
and Linus Pauling

Please note that this site is not a RealAudio server. It lacks full streaming capability. Two options are provided for each sound clip. Please try "HTTP Stream" first. There will be a 5 to 10 second delay while your player buffers the data.

If your connection is slow, try "download." The audio will not stream; playback will begin when the download is complete. As downloads, these clips should work with modems of any speed and from behind any firewall. You can get a free RealPlayer here.

TIP: Close the RealPlayer between clips.


Aaron Novick (1919-2000) met Szilard in 1943 at the Chicago Met Lab. In 1947, they began their collaboration in molecular biology at the University of Chicago.

HTTP Stream or 52k download
He would chew on an idea like a dog on a bone. You know, Leo would just sort of chew on it. He was the only person I've ever known who could think consistently for some period of time. You know most of us think for a few seconds at most and then our mind wanders, and then a few more seconds. He could just go on and on. He had a persistence. Fantastic.

HTTP Stream or 28k download
He was very generous with ideas. Extremely generous. We used to say that not long after he would visit some laboratory, there would be a series of discoveries based on the ideas that he had left there.

HTTP Stream or 77k download
There is a nice story about him that Ed Levi, who was Dean of the Law School and then Chancellor at Chicago, and then later Attorney General
[told about him]. Levi described Szilard once as -- Imagine there's a jury with twelve members, and there's a vote. Szilard is one of the members. And the vote is eleven to one. Of course, Szilard is the one. Well, one by one Szilard convinces the other jurors of his point of view. They take another vote, and now it's eleven to one against, and he is again the one. And I told him this, and he says, "And quite rightfully!"


Linus Pauling (1901-1994) joined Szilard, Einstein, and others in 1946 as a Trustee of the Emergency Committee of Atomic Scientists. Pauling's campaign against atmospheric nuclear testing won him the 1962 Nobel Peace Prize.

HTTP Stream or 63k download
I saw a lot of him in connection with the Pugwash movement. Yes, he went, he was present, at the Pugwash meetings. And of course he was a non-conformist, Leo. I remember one Pugwash meeting in Kitzbühel
[Austria] in which there was essential unanimity. I think everyone there, Topchiev from the Soviet Union, everyone voted for something, but Szilard abstained.


Coming eventually: more voices, more stories.


Copyright © 1996-2001 Gene Dannen
Created: July 1, 1996 -- Last modified: January 6, 2001
URL: http://www.dannen.com/audio.html
Gene Dannen / gene@dannen.com

* UP to Leo Szilard Online