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Durham University

Centre for Particle Theory

General Relativity

16 Lectures Dr A. Donos

General Relativity, Einstein's theory of gravity, is one of the most self-contained and elegant theories on the market; it has sometimes been viewed as somewhat disconnected from ``real physics''. However, with the rise in popularity of the superstring as a quantum theory of the interactions of nature including gravity, the importance of its classical limit, GR, has re-emerged. This course introduces many of the essential features of modern gravity theory, the notion of a space-time manifold and differential geometry, and black holes.

Outline of the course

Setting up differential geometry.
Differentiation on manifolds.
Structure on the manifold.
Solving the Einstein equations.

Books for the course

R.M.Wald, General Relativity (University of Chicago Press, 1984); Very useful book. The course uses the same notation and covers basically Chapters 1-4, Chapter 6 and parts of Chapter 12.
J. B. Hartle, Gravity: An Introduction to Einstein's General Relativity (Addison-Wesley, 2003)
S. Caroll, Spacetime and Geometry: An Introduction to General Relativity (Adison- Wesley, 2004); Also a useful recent book; somewhat easier.
C.W.Misner, K.S.Thorne and J.A.Wheeler, Gravitation (W.H.Freeman, 1973); Very long, but useful if you are having trouble with a particular point.