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Andrew Pickerig interviews conducted for his book CONSTRUCTING QUARKS, 1978-1985

Description of Collection


American Institute of Physics. Niels Bohr Library & Archives.

Papers created by

Pickering, Andrew.

Size of collection

1 linear foot
1 half manuscript box
1 flat manuscript box
2 tape boxes

Short description of collection

Consists of audio taped interviews with thirty-six particle physicists, conducted as background material for his book, CONSTRUCTING QUARKS: A SOCIOLOGICAL HISTORY OF PARTICLE PHYSICS (1984).

Language(s) of collection


Collection number:


Biographical Note

Andrew Pickering, sociologist and historian of science. Researcher in physics at the Niels Bohr Institute, Copenhagen, and the Daresbury Laboratory, United Kingdom from 1973 until 1975, and in sociology of science at the Science Studies Unit of the University of Edinburgh beginning in 1976.

Scope and Contents of Collection

Consists of interviews with thirty-six particle physicists, conducted as background material for his book CONSTRUCTING QUARKS: A SOCIOLOGICAL HISTORY OF PARTICLE PHYSICS, published in 1984. Pickering sought to document the founding and growth of research traditions structured around the quark concept, therefore, almost all interviews focused upon the interviewee's overall research career rather than narrowly defined historical episodes. They cover the period from 1964 when the quark model was formulated to 1980 when quark theories had come to dominate research practice in high-energy physics. More specific topics include J/psi color models, Fairbank's fractional charges, and the Price magnetic monopoole. Participants include: Henry Abarbanel, Luis W. Alvarez, Barry Barish, A. O. Barut, John Bell, James Bjorken, Elliott D. Bloom, Gordon Feldman, Geoffrey Chew, Sidney Coleman, A. De Rujula, Sid Drell, John Ellis, P.G.O. Freund, Erwin Gabathuler, Mary Gaillard, H. Georgi, Gerson Goldhaber, Sheldon Glashow, Peter Higgs, Roman Jackiw, R. L. Jaffe, P. V. Langshoff, Ed Lofgren, Seymour Joseph Lindenbaum, Francis Eugene Low, Y. Nambu, Robert B. Palmer, and Hugh David Politzer, Charles Prescott, P. Buford Price, Chris Quigg, B. Richter, A. Salam, G. t'Hooft, and C. N. Yang.

Restrictions on Use and Access

Some interviews are closed until reviewed by Pickering. Others required permission to quote or cite from the interview. Special circumstances are marked in the finding aid and on the cassette tapes.

Selected Search Terms

These papers have been indexed in the International Catalog of Sources for History of Physics and Allied Sciences (ICOS) using the following terms. Those seeking related materials should search under these terms.


Abarbanel, H. D. I.
Alvarez, Luis W., 1911-
Barish, Barry
Barut, A. O. (Asim Orhan), 1926-
Bell, J. S.
Bjorken, James D.
Bloom, E. (Elliott)
Chew, Geoffrey F.
Coleman, Sidney. 1937-2007.
De R'ujula, A. (Alvaro)
Drell, Sidney D. (Sidney David), 1926-
Ellis, John, 1946-
Feldman, Gordon
Freund, Peter G. O. (Peter George Oliver), 1936-
Gabathuler, Erwin.
Gaillard, Mary K.
Georgi, Howard.
Glashow, Sheldon L.
Goldhaber, Gerson
Higgs, Peter Ware.
Hooft, G. 't
Jackiw, Roman W.
Langshoff, P. W.
Lindenbaum, S. J.
Low, Francis E. (Francis Eugene), 1921-2007
Löfgren, Edward J., 1908-
Nanbu, Yôichirô, 1921-
Palmer, Robert B.
Politzer, H. David (Hugh David), 1949-
Price, Paul Buford, Jr., 1932-
Quigg, Chris.
Richter, Burton, 1931-
Salam, Abdus, 1926-
Stech, Berthold, 1924-
Yang, Chen Ning, 1922-

Subject terms

Elementary particles
Mangetic monopoles.
Particles (Nuclear physics)
Quantum chromodynamics.
Quarks. History.

Genre terms

Oral histories.

Organization and Arrangement of Collection

This collection is organized into three series:

  • Series I: Unrestricted interviews
  • Series II: Restricted interviews
  • Series III: Transripts

Each series is arranged alphabetically by interviewee last name.

Preferred Citation of Collection

Box [number], Folder [number], Andrew Pickerig interviews conducted for his book CONSTRUCTING QUARKS. American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library & Archives, College Park, MD 20740, USA.

Administrative Information


Finding Aid to the Andrew Pickerig interviews conducted for his book CONSTRUCTING QUARKS, 1978-1985


American Institute of Physics Niels Bohr Library & Archives

One Physics Ellipse
College Park, MD 20740


Encoding Information

Machine-readable finding aid encoded by Melanie J. Mueller in 2012. Any revisions made to this finding aid occurred as part of the editing and encoding process.

Series I: Unrestricted interviews

Some interviews require the interviewee's permission to quote or cite from the interview. These conditions are marked on the audio cassettes.

Box 1 Alvarez, Luis W. (with Hagstrom), undated
Alvarez, Luis W., 1981
Appelquist, T., 1978
Ararbanel, Henry, 1978
Barish, Barry, 1980
Barut, A. O., 1978
Bell, John S., 1978
Bjorken, James D., 1978
Bloom, Elliot D., 1981
Chew, Geoffrey, 1978
Coleman, Sidney, 1978
de Rujula, A., 1978
Drell, Sidney D., 1978
Ellis, John, 1978
Fairbank, W. M., 1978
Feldman, Gordon, 1978
Freund, Peter G. O., 1978
Fritzsch, Harald, 1978
Gabathuler, Erwin, 1980
Gaillard, Mary, 1978
Georgi, H., 1978
Glashow, Sheldon, 1978
Goldhaber, Gerson, 1981
Hagstrom, Ray, 1978
Higgs, Peter W., 1977
Jackiw, Roman, 1978
Jaffe, R. L., 1978
Langshoff, P. W., 1980
Lofgren, Edward J., 1981
Box 2 Lindenbaum, S. J., 1981
Low, Francis E., 1985
Nambu, Yoichiro, 1980
Palmer, Robert B., 1981
Pati, Jogesh, 1978
Politzer, Hugh David, 1978
Preparata, G., 1978
Prescott, Charles, 1981
Price, P. Buford, 1978
Quigg, Chris, 1978
Richter, Burton, 1981
Box 3 Salam, Abdus, 1977
Stech, B., 1979
t'Hooft, G., 1980
Yang, Chen Ning, 1978

Series II: Restricted interviews

These interviews have restricted access conditions and need permission from interviewee, Pickering, or both.

Box 3 Dashen, Roger, 1978
Feynman, Richard, 1978
Gilman, Fred, 1978
Goldstone, Jeffrey, 1978
Gross, David, 1978
Johnson, K. J., 1978
Sakurai, J. J., 1978
Taylor, Dick, 1981
Veneziano, G., 1978

Series III: Transcripts

Box 4 Glashow, Sheldon - transcript, 1978
Yang, C. N. - transcript, 1978