Michael Polanyi—pupils and crossroads—on the 125th anniversary of his birth

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Michael Polanyi (1891–1976) was a Hungarian-born British physician turned physical chemist turned philosopher. His milestone epistemological treatise Personal Knowledge followed his substantial discoveries in adsorption studies, X-ray crystallography, materials science, and the mechanism of chemical reactions. Michael Polanyi was one of the last polymaths and his teachings impacted the world views of other outstanding contributors to twentieth century science and culture.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1327-1344
Number of pages18
JournalStructural Chemistry
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2016



  • Adsorption
  • Epistemology
  • Eugene P. Wigner
  • John C. Polanyi
  • Melvin Calvin
  • Michael Polanyi
  • Reaction mechanisms
  • X-ray crystallography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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