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Lingvistov Film Discussion: The Theory of Everything (2014)

"While there is life, there is hope."

The Theory of Everything is the story of the most brilliant and celebrated physicist of our time, Stephen Hawking, and Jane Wilde the arts student he fell in love with whilst studying at Cambridge in the 1960s.

Vocabulary Exercises

ex. 1 Explain the following words and expressions. Make up your own sentences with them.
to tempt
to matter
to affect
to do one's best
underlying order of the world
to succeed
to deal with
to orbit

Comprehension Exercises

The-Theory-Of-Everything-002ex. 1 What do you know about Stephen Hawking? Why do you think he was able to succeed and continue working despite the problems with health? How can you characterize this person?

ex. 2
Who said these words? Recall the situations:
- What about you? What are you?...
- Cosmologist, I'm a Cosmologist.
- What is that?
- It is a kind of religion for intelligent atheists.

- Your glasses are always dirty.

I want us to be together for as long as we have got. If that is not very long, well, then that is just how it is.

- Time.
- Time?

- No... doctors. No doctors!

- It's American!
- Is that a problem?

- I have loved you.

- I was stopped recently by a tourist at Cambridge who asked if I was the real Stephen Hawking. I replied I was not, and said the real one was much better looking.

- What you're writing?
- Look what we made.

3 Answer the questions:
1. Where and what did Stephen Hawking study?
2. Was he different from other students? Prove it.
3. How did Jane and Stephen meet?
4. What was Stephen’s opinion about religion? Why did he say that science was is religion?
5. Describe his family. What was their attitude to Jane’s beliefs and preferences in art?
6. Why did Jane like Stephen?
7. How did he first learn that he had a motor neuron disease? What is it?
8. What was Jane’s decision when she found it out?
9. How did Stephen come up with the subject of his thesis? Why “time”?
10. When and how did they meet Jonathan? What was his role in their life?
11. What happened when Jane, Jonathan and the kids went camping?
12. Why did Jane decide that the surgeons should perform tracheotomy on Stephen?
13. How did they return his voice?
14. Who was Elaine?
15. Do you think that taking care of Stephen was a burden for Jane? Do you understand her decision to divorce him?
16. How did Stephen’s life continue after the divorce?
17. What do you know about his life and work now?

4 Discuss the following quotations by Stephen Hawking:
There ought to be something very special about the boundary conditions of the universe. And what can be more special than that there is no boundary? And there should be no boundary to human endeavor. We are all different. However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there is life, there is hope.

Although I cannot move and I have to speak through a computer, in my mind I am free.

People who boast about their IQ are losers.

We are all different, but we share the same human spirit. Perhaps it’s human nature that we adapt and survive.

I have lived with the prospect of an early death for the last 49 years. I’m not afraid of death, but I’m in no hurry to die. I have so much I want to do first.

Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious, and however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. It matters that you don’t just give up.

My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all.