Are there any noted/respected academics who made brilliant discoveries late in life (say after their 40’s)?
I’m considering all types of disciplines and fields here (e.g. Economics, Mathematics, Physics etc.).
How many academics have achieved great things after having started thier academic discipline quite late?
The only example to this that I can think of is Edward Witten (considered by many to be one of the greatest thoeretical physicists of our age). He thought of going in to journalism til he was about 23, and thereafter decided that he hadn’t the right kind of personality for it. So he decided on physics instead.
He made many discoveries tied to string theory (ha ha!) during his mid-forties, and continues to be influential even now in his mid-fifties.
I hear John A. Wheeler is still going strong into his 90’s.
But I think you’ll agree that Ed still got into physics (relatively) young - and well John Wheeler isn’t considered in the same light anymore.
Okay, my examples are pretty weak but you get a general idea.
How many academics are still (or have begun) making discoveries later on in life (I take “later on in life” as any age after 40 and beyond)?
And how many were successful after starting thier academic careers (relatively) late on in life (“relatively” pertains to any age after 26)?