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Julian Schwinger: Source theory and the UCLA years - from magnetic charge to the Casimir effect

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INSPIRE-HEP
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Abstract

Julian Schwinger began the construction of Source Theory in 1966 in response to the then apparent failure of quantum field theory to describe strong interactions, the physical remoteness of renormalization, and the utility of effective actions in describing chiral dynamics. I will argue that the source theory development was not really so abrupt a break with the past as Julian may have implied, for the ideas and techniques in large measure were present in his work at least as early as 1951. Those techniques and ideas are still of fundamental importance to theoretical physics, so much so that the designation ``source theory'' has become superfluous. Julian did a great deal of innovative physics during the last 30 years of his life, and I will touch on some of the major themes. The impact of much of this work is not yet apparent. (Invited talk at Washington APS/AAPT meeting)

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