# Quantum Field Theory and Critical Phenomena: Fifth Edition

## Jean Zinn-Justin

### Abstract

Introduced as a quantum extension of Maxwell's classical theory, quantum electrodynamic (QED) has been the first example of a quantum field theory (QFT). Eventually, QFT has become the framework for the discussion of all fundamental interactions at the microscopic scale except, possibly, gravity. More surprisingly, it has also provided a framework for the understanding of second order phase transitions in statistical mechanics. In fact, as hopefully this work illustrates, QFT is the natural framework for the discussion of most systems involving an infinite number of degrees of freedom with loc ... More

Introduced as a quantum extension of Maxwell's classical theory, quantum electrodynamic (QED) has been the first example of a quantum field theory (QFT). Eventually, QFT has become the framework for the discussion of all fundamental interactions at the microscopic scale except, possibly, gravity. More surprisingly, it has also provided a framework for the understanding of second order phase transitions in statistical mechanics. In fact, as hopefully this work illustrates, QFT is the natural framework for the discussion of most systems involving an infinite number of degrees of freedom with local couplings. These systems range from cold Bose gases at the condensation temperature (about ten nanokelvin) to conventional phase transitions (from a few degrees to several hundred) and high energy particle physics up to a TeV, altogether more than twenty orders of magnitude in the energy scale. Therefore, although excellent textbooks about QFT had already been published, I thought, many years ago, that it might not be completely worthless to present a work in which the strong formal relations between particle physics and the theory of critical phenomena are systematically emphasized. This option explains some of the choices made in the presentation. A formulation in terms of field integrals has been adopted to study the properties of QFT. The language of partition and correlation functions has been used throughout, even in applications of QFT to particle physics. Renormalization and renormalization group (RG) properties are systematically discussed. The notion of effective field theory (EFT) and the emergence of renormalizable theories are described. The consequences for fine-tuning and triviality issue are emphasized. This fifth edition has been updated and fully revised.

*Keywords: *
quantum field theory (QFT),
critical phenomena,
phase transitions,
renormalization group (RG),
particle physics,
gauge theories,
critical exponents,
field integrals

### Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2021 |
Print ISBN-13: 9780198834625 |

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2021 |
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198834625.001.0001 |