ABSTRACT

In the early 1950s the American physicist David Bohm (1917-1992) produced a new interpretation of quantum mechanics and had to flee from McCarthyism. Rejected at Princeton, he moved to Sãão Paulo. This article focuses on the reception of his early papers on the causal interpretation, his Brazilian exile, and the culture of physics surrounding the foundations of quantum mechanics. It weighs the strength of the Copenhagen interpretation, discusses the presentation of the foundations of quantum mechanics in the training of physicists, describes the results Bohm and his collaborators achieved. It also compares the reception of Bohm's ideas with that of Hugh Everett's interpretation. The cultural context of physics had a more significant influence on the reception of Bohm's ideas than the McCarthyist climate.

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