Edward Teller, "Father of H-Bomb" Signed Time Cover
A November 18, 1957 issue of Time Magazine (Volume LXX, Number 21) featuring Edward Teller (1908-2003) on the front cover, signed by the celebrated physicist as "Edward Teller" along the bottom. With vividly colored and entirely intact front and back softcovers, and colored insets found within. Expected wear includes light overall toning, and a few wrinkles ans scuffs, else near fine. 128pp. 8.25" x 11.125".
The front cover, after an original illustration by Russian-American artist Boris Artzybasheff (1899-1965), depicts Teller standing in front of a chalkboard scrawled with scientific equations. The extreme close-up of Teller's face rendered in a hyper realistic style is captioned "Scientist Edward Teller."
This issue of Time was released two weeks after the Soviet Union launched Sputnik II, the first spacecraft carrying a living animal to reach orbit, on November 3, 1957. This Soviet triumph in the U.S. / Soviet "science race" had been preceded by the launch of satellite Sputnik I a month earlier, on October 4, 1957. The topics explored in this issue, then, should be placed in a context of ever ratcheting Cold War tension.
Time's Cover Story entitled "Knowledge is Power" appears under the "Defense" category between p. 21-25. The article discusses the state of American science in relation to the Soviet Union by examining eight of its "leading lights." Edward Teller, the primary scientist profiled in the article, is featured as the type of genius that America needs to advance its technologies and arm itself. Teller is quoted as saying, "Every year without war is a benefit for all mankind. But the Russians can conquer us without fighting, through a growing scientific and technological preponderance…If the Russians go ahead faster than we do in this direction, we will be just helpless."
Hungarian-born American physicist Edward Teller was popularly known as "the father of the hydrogen bomb" because of significant contributions to its study from the mid-1940s to the early 1950s. Teller had been recruited for the Theoretical Division of the Manhattan Project during World War II, and had worked on fission, fusion, and viable implosion mechanisms. He became a vocal advocate of the hydrogen bomb after the war ended, but his credibility was put into question in part by his testimony against colleague and former Los Alamos Laboratory Director J. Robert Oppenheimer (1904-1967). Interestingly, Oppenheimer is also considered within Time's Teller article.
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