Columbia professor strips for quantum mechanics lesson - New York News

Columbia professor strips for quantum mechanics lesson

Posted: Updated:
NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

Columbia University physics professor Emlyn Hughes stripped down to his shorts in class on Monday. He did this before a backdrop of images showing the 9/11 attacks, Nazis, Adolf Hitler, and Saddam Hussein. His assistants then used a sword to stab blindfolded stuffed animals.

Of course, students captured the behavior on cellphone video.

Professor Hughes had one hour to teach quantum mechanics, the mathematical formulas predicting the behavior of microscopic particles. These are brain-draining equations starting with vector analysis.

He explained: "In order to learn quantum mechanics you have to strip to your raw, erase the entire garbage in your brain and start over again."

Some students we spoke to seemed to welcome Professor Hughes's approach.

We could not reach Professor Hughes for comment.

A Columbia a spokesman issued a statement saying: "Universities should have a climate of academic freedom though classes should stick to the subject matter and concluded; administrators are currently reviewing the facts of this particular presentation in quantum mechanics."

Professor Hughes is deputy chair of the Physics Department. A faculty member very close to him said he has tenure, so he is not going anywhere.

That may be good for the country because Hughes is one of the lead American physicists working on the biggest science project in the world: the Large Hadron Collider at CERN.

JOIN THE CONVERSATION: Do you feel he was out of line or just being creative? CLICK HERE and weigh in on Facebook.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Broadway preview: 'It's Only a Play'

    Broadway preview: 'It's Only a Play'

    Thursday, August 28 2014 6:12 PM EDT2014-08-28 22:12:00 GMT
    Matthew Broderick, Nathan Lane, Stockard Channing, F. Murray Abraham, and Megan Mullally are just some of the names heading back to Broadway. Legendary playwright and four-time tony winner Terrence McNally leads the all-star cast in the new Broadway play appropriately titled It's Only a Play.
    Matthew Broderick, Nathan Lane, Stockard Channing, F. Murray Abraham, and Megan Mullally are just some of the names heading back to Broadway. Legendary playwright and four-time tony winner Terrence McNally leads the all-star cast in the new Broadway play appropriately titled It's Only a Play.
  • Mayor pushes back pre-k concerns

    Mayor pushes back pre-k concerns

    Thursday, August 28 2014 5:16 PM EDT2014-08-28 21:16:48 GMT
    Mayor Bill de Blasio, educators and city leaders gathered at p.s. 307 in Brooklyn on Thursday to talk with pride about more than 50,000 kids who have enrolled in pre-kindergarten. Universal full-day pre-k was a platform of his campaign when he ran for mayor.Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina also feels the pre-k program is ready for launch.
    Mayor Bill de Blasio, educators and city leaders gathered at p.s. 307 in Brooklyn on Thursday to talk with pride about more than 50,000 kids who have enrolled in pre-kindergarten. Universal full-day pre-k was a platform of his campaign when he ran for mayor.Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina also feels the pre-k program is ready for launch.
  • Missing NJ man found dead in Israeli forest

    Missing NJ man found dead in Israeli forest

    Thursday, August 28 2014 4:33 PM EDT2014-08-28 20:33:49 GMT
    The body of a missing New Jersey religious student who disappeared during a hike in a forest outside Jerusalem last week has been found. Aaron Sofer, 23, of Lakewood, N.J., had been missing since Friday, when he went on a hike with a friend in the Jerusalem Forest and the two became separated, said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld.
    The body of a missing New Jersey religious student who disappeared during a hike in a forest outside Jerusalem last week has been found. Aaron Sofer, 23, of Lakewood, N.J., had been missing since Friday, when he went on a hike with a friend in the Jerusalem Forest and the two became separated, said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices