Roger Penrose: Cosmic Inflation Is ‘Fantasy’

27:16 minutes

Sir Roger Penrose calls string theory a “fashion,” quantum mechanics “faith,” and cosmic inflation a “fantasy.” Coming from an armchair theorist, these declarations might be dismissed. But Penrose is a well-respected physicist who co-authored a seminal paper on black holes with Stephen Hawking. What’s wrong with modern physics—and could alternative theories explain our observations of the universe?

Segment Guests

Roger Penrose

Sir Roger Penrose is author of Fashion, Faith, and Fantasy in the New Physics of the Universe (Princeton University Press, 2016). He is the Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford in Oxford, United Kingdom.

Meet the Producer

About Christopher Intagliata

Christopher Intagliata was Science Friday’s senior producer. He once served as a prop in an optical illusion and speaks passable Ira Flatowese.